Making a phone rugged is just begging reviewers to beat the hell out of it, so when i-mate decided to coat its 810-F with rubber and make it impervious to cold, heat, and water, they should've known damn well what was coming next. CNET Asia had the distinct privilege of doing the honors with this one, and happily, the WinMo 6.1-powered set survived being packed in ice for an hour and being dropped onto carpet from a normal height (we would've preferred concrete, but beggars can't be choosers). Unfortunately, the phone has a non-removable battery to help meet its rugged aims, the keyboard's said to be ridiculously stiff, and the stylus is unusably small -- but if you need Windows Mobile, GPS, WiFi, and a magnetic compass in a package that won't let you down in any environment, you might be able to overlook the shortcomings when the phone's released next month.

[Via wmpoweruser.com]

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i-mate's rugged 810-F tortured for science, pleasure