Industrial manufacturer Cat debuts its first rugged smartphone, the Cat B15 – tractor not included

cat-b15_0096006401367572In a shocking turn of events at this year’s Mobile World Congress, a phone was debuted. Wait – hear us out. It’s not so much that a phone was introduced, but the company that introduced it: Caterpillar Industrial, or, Cat. You know, that company that makes harvesters, tractors, forklifts, and the like.

It’s an interesting turn of events for the company, which this week debuted its first phone, the Cat B15, a not surprisingly uber-rugged device, as reported by CNET. Just by looking at the octagon-shaped smartphone, it’s obvious that this is a resilient creation, more so than the average phone on the market.

The target buyers for the Cat B15, not surprisingly, are industrial and construction workers, who work in conditions that are not always the safest … or softest. It’s made out of hardened rubber and aluminum, with a Gorilla Glass display, and runs on Android 4.1 Jelly Bean supported by a 1GHz dual-core MediaTek processor. Dust flaps cover both the headset jack and charging ports, which is perfect for protection at any messy construction site or warehouse. To boot, the flaps help protect the phone in the event it’s dropped and plunged under water, provided it doesn’t stay under for more than 30 minutes.

While shock-resistant, don’t expect for the phone to survive falls from too high up. It’s designed to survive falls safely from up to six feet, and can even withstand – and still function – in temperatures from -4 to 131 degrees Fahrenheit … virtually unheard of in the mobile world.

We don’t expect that this will be a super popular phone once it hits the market, particularly because of its thickness, and the fact that many consumers are looking for something a little sleeker. But, we do think it’s quite an impressive device and will fare well in its target market.