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The Samsung Convoy 2 is the latest rugged cellphone in Verizon's portfolio

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The Samsung Convoy 2 is the latest rugged cellphone in Verizon's portfolio
The Samsung Convoy 2 is the latest rugged cellphone in Verizon's portfolio
Looking for a phone that can withstand a lot more abuse than an average handset would ever be subjected to? In that case, Verizon might have exactly what you need. The Samsung Convoy 2 has just been added to Big Red's portfolio and is the carrier's latest military-grade offering. It is resistant to shock, dust, sand, solar radiation, salt fog, humidity, extreme temperatures and probably even cooties. Being as rugged as it is, the Samsung Convoy 2 is the perfect cellphone for those leading an adventurous lifestyle or simply suffering from a bad case of butter fingers.

As the case is with most tough devices, however, the Convoy 2 does not offer much in terms of hardware specs. It features a 2.2-inch main display with QVGA resolution and a secondary external screen for notifications. A 3.2-megapixel camera with flash is also on board, as well as Bluetooth connectivity, GPS, and push-to-talk functionality. Still, the device is 3G-enabled, boasts an HTML browser – Opera Mini, to be more precise, and comes with Facebook, Twitter and MySpace clients out of the box.

The Samsung Convoy 2 will set you back $80 after you put your signature on a 2-year contract. Those who are interested in getting one can either order it from Verizon's online store today, or wait for a few weeks until the phone makes it to the carrier's outlets nationwide.

source: Verizon Wireless

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posted on 09 Aug 2011, 11:00

1. kamen (Posts: 84; Member since: 18 Jul 2011)


Rugged? A clamshell phone? That must be a joke... I doubt it is above IP44 certification (if it has one) - thats some dust and splash.

I am searching for a tough phone and have decided to get one Samsung B2710 - IP67 (Dust tight - No ingress of dust; complete protection against contact; Immersion up to 1 m - Ingress of water in harmful quantity shall not be possible when the enclosure is immersed in water under defined conditions of pressure and time)

posted on 09 Aug 2011, 11:38

2. Sniggly (Posts: 6920; Member since: 05 Dec 2009)


Yes, a rugged clamshell phone. And yes, they do work. I know that the predecessor to this phone, the original Convoy, kicked total ass- it wasn't waterproof, but could survive everything else, and it was reliable and loud as hell too.

Casio also makes these, and while they're not as reliable in my experience, they can still take a terrific beating. I've heard of them sinking to the bottoms of lakes, getting run over by semis, people falling on them, being used as hockey pucks, and getting into 120 mph car crashes- and surviving it all.

posted on 10 Aug 2011, 10:06 2

4. kamen (Posts: 84; Member since: 18 Jul 2011)


That got me intrested - if only there were some videos :)

posted on 10 Aug 2011, 11:30

5. SkeeterManJenkins (unregistered)


I've worked for Verizon going on 2 years now and I can provide a little insight on these particular phones:

Original Convoy:

Piss poor signal reception and overall reliability. I would personally avoid this phone. It's only shock absorbant and dust resistant. No water or electro static shock resistance. The speakers both in and out are exceptional. The body itself is just okay as far as damage resistance is concerned.

Motorola Barrage:

Phenomenal signal reception. Dust, water, shock and static resistant. However, the build quality is suspect. Just this morning I had a barrage come in with a cracked hinge and loose charging port cover. Definitely hit or miss.

Casio Ravine:

I have seen the best overall satisfaction with this particular phone. The signal reception is average, but as far as the durability of the phone is concerned it blows both of the other phones out of the water. It has tight seals on all the ports, superior water resistance, electrostatic shock resistance and I would go as far as to say that the phone is dust proof.

It also has a slide to lock battery door that pulls the gasket seal tighter into the phone. The Barrage and Convoy have these awful twist to lock battery doors and that only fully seal half the time. The ravine also has a built in flashlight and some phone specific apps called G'ZGear which give you a compass, tide calendar and pedometer among other things.

Bottom line:

The Ravine is probably the best bang for your buck unless you're in an area with poor signal reception. In that case, the Barrage is the superior choice. Don't bother with the convoy.

posted on 10 Aug 2011, 11:31

6. SkeeterManJenkins (unregistered)


Whoops, replied to the wrong poster.

I've worked for Verizon going on 2 years now and I can provide a little insight on these particular phones:

Original Convoy:

Piss poor signal reception and overall reliability. I would personally avoid this phone. It's only shock absorbant and dust resistant. No water or electro static shock resistance. The speakers both in and out are exceptional. The body itself is just okay as far as damage resistance is concerned.

Motorola Barrage:

Phenomenal signal reception. Dust, water, shock and static resistant. However, the build quality is suspect. Just this morning I had a barrage come in with a cracked hinge and loose charging port cover. Definitely hit or miss.

Casio Ravine:

I have seen the best overall satisfaction with this particular phone. The signal reception is average, but as far as the durability of the phone is concerned it blows both of the other phones out of the water. It has tight seals on all the ports, superior water resistance, electrostatic shock resistance and I would go as far as to say that the phone is dust proof.

It also has a slide to lock battery door that pulls the gasket seal tighter into the phone. The Barrage and Convoy have these awful twist to lock battery doors and that only fully seal half the time. The ravine also has a built in flashlight and some phone specific apps called G'ZGear which give you a compass, tide calendar and pedometer among other things.

Bottom line:

The Ravine is probably the best bang for your buck unless you're in an area with poor signal reception. In that case, the Barrage is the superior choice. Don't bother with the convoy.

posted on 11 Aug 2011, 20:09

7. phonesearcher (unregistered)


Skeeter, I have the Ravine and I'm told my voice sounds garbled and tinny. Its due to the mic being located under the hinge on the right side of the phone, which gets covered by my face when I talk. I have to compensate by holding the phone away from my face, use it on my left side or turn the speakers on. I need a basic phone that's loud and clear coming in and going out. I'm about to exchange my Ravine for the Convoy 2. If you think this is a downgrade please let me know.

Thanks

posted on 15 Aug 2011, 09:54

10. SkeeterManJenkins (unregistered)


Phoneresearcher

Honestly, I'm not sure if it will be a downgrade or not. The phone is too new and I have yet to hear any feedback from the handful of people I know who have them.

You're right, the microphone can be an issue. Casio chose an odd spot for their microphone placement and I have noticed that most people can obscure the microphone with their fingers when holding it, thus causing the tinny or "far away" sound. The only effective way to rectify that issue is not to hold the phone by the hinge. Instead, clasp the bottom of the device with your thumb, ring, middle and pinky fingers and then place your index finger on the outside display of the Ravine (the round window).

It's a silly quirk of the phone and in theory you should be able to hold a phone however you'd like, but if you can look passed that minor gripe then your experience should be really great.

As I mentioned, I can't speak for the quality of the Convoy 2, but if you're willing to take the risk and try it out the payoff could be worth it. I'd just tread lightly in making the switch. I will note that the build quality makes the phone feel like a cheap toy. That's my objective opinion.

My personal opinion is that I wouldn't make the switch.

Hopefully that helps!

posted on 11 Aug 2011, 21:23

8. nola22 (unregistered)


I'm trying to make a decision between these 3 phones. Is there really a sigificant difference between signal reception? Several salespersons have told me that differences in reception levels between phones (not carriers) is a thing of the past. True or bs? I've been happy with motorola clamshells, but the barrage doesn't look very sturdy and has been discontinued. Same with the first gen Convoy. Microphone issues with the Casio are widely reported. Any chance the new convoy resolves the reception issues noted by SkeeterMan?

Thanks in advance for any input.

posted on 15 Aug 2011, 10:07

11. SkeeterManJenkins (unregistered)


There IS as significant difference in signal reception both among carriers AND manufacturers.

Overall, Motorola phones generally have superior signal reception to most phones. I wish I could give you a concrete reason as to why, but comparing my personal experience to the experiences of the customers I have served I can say with certainty that Motorola outclasses most other manufacturers. It may help to know that I office out of rural areas in Minnesota where signal reception has always been an issue. Motorolas just work. LG, HTC and Casio usually come in at a close second, trailing behind them are Samsung, Blackberry and various other manufacturers.

That isn't to say that signal reception is evident of overall device quality. Just because Motorola makes a phone with a great signal that doesn't mean their phone is great overall (take the Motorola Rival as an example.)

My opinion is obviously biased due to who I work for, but since I have worked for AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint, Alltell, Cingular and Cricket in the past I have some knowledge of them all. Verizon has the best coverage area you're going to find in rural areas. No one can hold a flame to them in those regards. Are they the cheapest or the best choice for everyone? Hell no. If you live in a populated area and don't travel frequently I might recommend going with Sprint or T-Mobile. If you have any concerns about reception or live in a troubled Cellular area then Verizon would definitely be best of all the evils.

To address the Barrage specifically I would say that the phone is above average in the sturdiness category. I have seen many of those phones come back with broken hinges due to normal wear and tear. That shouldn't happen unless you have impact damage and is evident of inferior build quality. The shell itself (especially the bottom half) is quite resilient and haven't heard many complaints about it. The back battery door is awful; most of the time the gasket doesn't properly seal when twisting battery door screw. I would say it happens with about 80% of the new phones I see. This will be the cause of major headaches if you have OCD or are anal about your belongings. Not to mention the issues that causes when it comes into contact with water.

I remain hopeful that the Samsung has addressed signal concerns with the Convoy but I haven't heard feedback from any owners so I am unable to verify it.

Hopefully this helps!

posted on 13 Aug 2011, 01:04

9. bannerone (unregistered)


I have had the first Convoy phone for about year now and can only say its a very great phone, contrary to the Skeeter loser comments, we are out in the middle of the desert, out in the dunes, on the lake, etc, etc, and my reception has always been great, where ever I am. I am sure the Convoy 2 is just as good of a phone and would not hesitate to upgrade to it when the time comes. Bottom Line: Convoy is a great tough phone with great recpeption where ever you might be. It wont let you down and you wont be unhappy with it I guarrentee.

posted on 15 Aug 2011, 10:13

12. SkeeterManJenkins (unregistered)


Bannerone

If you had great luck with the Convoy I am happy for you and I must point out that you are an exception to the norm. I honestly cannot count how many original Convoy returns I have seen since its' inception. If I had to guess I would say that the Convoy has a 60% return/exchange rate in the region I work.

Perhaps it's a regional thing. Here in rural Minnesota the phone doesn't work at all. I assume you live somewhere in the Southwest and the one major thing you have going for you is that the desert normally doesn't have much tree cover or forest/mountains/rolling hills to obscure Verizon's tower based signal coverage like we have here. I'm sure you can run into the occasional grove of Palms or Palo Verde Trees (stupid thorns) but that won't do much.

I try to remain completely objective when giving advice on Verizon's phones, but it isn't easy because user experience differs. If Samsung has worked in the past then I would consider using it, but calling me a loser because I'm trying to help people based on my years of experience is a bit silly don't you think?

posted on 20 Aug 2011, 13:49

13. Randy (unregistered)


My gzone Rock would take underwater pics and videos.

posted on 26 Aug 2011, 19:07

14. tryecrot (unregistered)


Yes there should realize the opportunity to RSS commentary, quite simply, CMS is another on the blog.

posted on 30 Nov 2011, 06:54

15. Creb356 (Posts: 2; Member since: 30 Nov 2011)


Hey, SkeeterManJenkins, thanks for your comments. Now that the Motorolla Barrage is discontinued, do you have any thoughts on the Casio Ravine 2 and the Convoy 2, particularly regarding reception and voice quality?

posted on 01 Dec 2011, 08:31

16. Creb356 (Posts: 2; Member since: 30 Nov 2011)


After reading every review I culd find on the Convoy 2 and the Ravine 2 I went to a Verizon store to look at them iin person. Though the reviews are often conflicting, when I put each device in my hand and explored the menues it was clear that the Ravine is the superior product. The touch and feel is totally different, and Casio wins by a wide margin.

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