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The Unihertz Atom is not a smartphone that would be considered as the best smartphone by most people. In fact, it’s not even good in terms of value among the best small phones. But it can be a boon for people who require a small secondary burner phone for their work or something else. Today we are going to see whether or not this phone can be considered for the best rugged smartphone title below 300 bucks.
Rugged smartphones don’t really make sense for a typical smartphone user to use as their daily driver. But what about as a secondary burner phone? That’s precisely the concept the Unihertz Atom nails. And it has a lot of features (like NFC) that are not usually seen at this price.
Even the best rugged phones that come at exorbitant prices don’t sport flagship chipsets inside. That’s why most won’t expect a phone that costs below $250 to come with a high-end SoC built-in. This one has a midrange Mediatek Helio P23 chip (64-bit octa core ARM LTE) inside. The Apple iPhone 12 Mini is a vastly better performer in comparison.
The 2000 mAH battery inside is slightly disappointing, to be honest. Even though it’s a tiny card-sized dual SIM smartphone, it is very bulky at the same time. That’s why we expected a slightly bigger battery capacity. Still, you should be able to get about 3 to 3 and a half hours of SOT (screen on time) out of it. The Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus can come in handy if you need a battery life that will last you for up to two days.
This phone comes with a 2.45 inch LCD display, which, to be very honest, doesn’t look good at all. It’s much smaller in reality than what it might seem in pictures. And the 240x432p resolution doesn’t help either. It is a far cry from something like the Apple iPhone 11 Pro’s OLED HDR display.
The durability of this phone is supposed to be the best part of it. And we are happy to report that the Unihertz Atom does deliver in this aspect. It is built inside a shock-resistant plastic shell that is made out of a similar kind of material that covers the Google Pixel 5’s aluminum body. The only problem here is that the power button and the SIM card tray will get loose & fall off easily over time.
For $235, the Unihertz Atom is undoubtedly not a bad phone. Unlike other supposed “rugged smartphones” at this price, the Unihertz Atom comes with a lot of useful features like dual SIM 4G simultaneously, NFC, and more. But then again, you can achieve pretty much the same level of durability by putting on a case on an ordinary budget phone.
If you need a secondary burner phone for work, the Unihertz Atom makes perfect sense. But if you don’t need one, it is somewhat of a hard bargain considering you can buy a better phone at this price and put on a cheap case.