After being unveiled at MWC 2016, the Cat S60 rugged smartphone was launched in India on Thursday. Priced at Rs. 64,999, the smartphone will be available from high-end multi-brand retail outlets as well as Amazon India from Friday, March 17.
Cat, or Caterpillar, is a US-based construction machinery manufacturing company. The company back in 2013 licensed its brand to UK-based Bullitt Mobile, which has since been producing Cat-branded feature phones, smartphones, as well as accessories, with an emphasis on durability.
The Cat S60’s highlight feature is the presence of the FLIR Lepton Thermal Microcamera Module on the rear panel. This, according to the company, offers numerous use cases. With the thermal camera, they can detect heat loss around windows and doors; spot moisture and missing insulation; identify over-heating electrical appliances and circuitry, and see in complete darkness.
The FLIR thermal camera on the Cat S60 can pick up heat and measure surface temperatures from a distance of up to 50 to 100 feet, which as per the company lets users see through obscurants such as smoke. It is ideal for professionals, utility workers, outdoor sports enthusiasts, and emergency first responders, the company said. The company is also touting a high-quality speaker that is capable of outputting at over 150dB.
Apart from the thermal camera, the Cat S60 is known for its rugged durability with a MIL-STD 810G rating to be able to withstand extreme temperatures (-25 degrees Celsius to 55 degrees Celsius), as well as shocks and drops (from up to 6 feet). It is also IP68-certified, with the company specifying the Cat S60 can withstand immersion in up to 5 metres of water for up to 1 hour. It also comes with a dedicated SOS button, which sends location coordinates to preprogrammed contacts. A separate programmable key is also present, and can be assigned to quickly start any application.
The dual-SIM (Nano-SIM) Cat S60 smartphone runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow. It sports a 4.7-inch HD (720×1280 pixels) display with wet finger and glove support, apart from Corning Gorilla Glass 4 protection. It is powered by a Snapdragon 617 SoC (4 cores clocked at 1.2GHz and 4 cores clocked at 1.5GHz) coupled with 3GB of RAM.
Apart from the FLIR thermal camera, the Cat S60 sports a 13-megapixel rear camera with underwater capabilities and dual-LED flash, apart from a 5-megapixel front-facing camera. It features 32GB of inbuilt storage that is expandable via microSD card (up to 128GB). Connectivity options include 4G LTE, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth v4.1, NFC, Micro-USB with OTG, and a 3.5mm audio jack. The company’s global site doesn’t list TDD-LTE 2300MHz (Band 40) for the ROW (Rest of the World) variant, only FDD-LTE 1800MHz (Band 3), which means it supports only one of the primary 4G LTE bands used by telecom operators in India. We’ve reached out to the company for clarification on this front, and will update the article once we know more.
The Cat S60 features a strengthened die cast frame, measures 147.9×73.4×12.66mm, and weighs in at 223 grams. It is powered by a non-removable 3800mAh battery that is rated to deliver up to 30 hours of talk time, and 43 days of standby time. Sensors on board include accelerometer, ambient light sensor, proximity sensor, and magnetometer. We’ve reached out the confirm the presence of a gyroscope.
On the announcement, Linda Summers, Chief Marketing Officer, Bullitt Group, global mobile device licensee for Caterpillar Inc. said, “Following our evaluation of the Indian market over the last year, we have spotted an immense opportunity for our devices in the rugged smartphone category. Recognising India’s potential as a sophisticated and fast growing market, we are looking to launch in the country with a highly-targeted offering for both consumers and the B2B sector. Globally we have reached a landmark figure of over 1 million units of Cat phone sales, and are very positive about reaching out to the Indian market.”