Samsung's Galaxy Xcover 4 will not win any design awards, but at least its ruggedness won't completely empty your wallet.
Unlike other smartphones, which usually see yearly iterations if they are popular enough, Samsung’s rugged Galaxy Xcover line seems to have a new entry every other year — the Galaxy Xcover 2 and its successor were released in 2013 and 2015, respectively. It is now 2017, which means it is appropriate for Samsung to have announced the Galaxy Xcover 4.
Much like its predecessors, the Galaxy Xcover 4 focuses on ruggedness than anything else. As such, the phone comes equipped with an IP68 rating, which means it is completely sealed against any sort of dust that might try to get in and can remain submerged in just under five feet of water for up to 30 minutes.
This does not mean you should take the Galaxy Xcover 4 swimming, but you can take the phone with you to ski — the Galaxy Xcover 4 satisfies the U.S. military standard MIL-STD 810G. In other words, the phone can stand up to extreme temperatures, harsh weather conditions, and other standards that the regular person will not find themselves worrying about. If you are into extreme sports or work in construction, however, the Galaxy Xcover 4 looks to fit your needs just fine.
As for actual specs, the Galaxy Xcover 4 features a 5-inch, 800 x 480 resolution display, with a 5-megapixel selfie shooter above it and a 13MP sensor around back. Under the hood, a 1.4GHz quad-core processor and 2GB RAM power the phone, with the 16GB of storage expandable through the MicroSD card slot. The 2,800mAh battery is more than enough to get the Galaxy Xcover 4 through the day, once you consider the hardware, while the phone runs Android 7.0 Nougat out of the box.
Overall, the Galaxy Xcover 4 looks to be a solid update from its predecessor, which got a bit long in the tooth. However, the phone’s main sticking point will be its 259-euro ($272) price tag. At that price, there are more powerful options out there, such as the Moto G4, so you really pay into the Galaxy Xcover 4’s ruggedness. If that is something you are into, the Galaxy Xcover 4 will be available in Europe sometime in April, though it is unknown whether it will make its way to other regions.