Kyocera Brigadier Review
Rumors about sapphire glass expected to be used by the next-generation iPhone have been swirling about for some time now, but we don’t have to necessarily wait for that exact handset to see what the hoopla is all about regarding this unique piece of glass. Instead, all we need to do is check out the already-available Kyocera Brigadier for Verizon Wireless. It not only employs virtually scratch-proof sapphire glass over its display, but also continues Kyocera’s tradition of crafting durable phones – the likes of which can withstand even the most extreme punishment. It’s fine and dandy it can do all that, but does it have enough additional quality elements to make it a contender?
The package contains:
- microUSB cable
- Wall charger
- Product safety & warranty information
- Getting to know your phone guide
Good looks aren’t in its DNA, but its rugged construction gives it some serious protection.
Hardly the kind of phone that bases its success solely on having good looks, the Kyocera Brigadier appears exactly like any other heavily ruggedized smartphone put out in the last couple of years. It’s thick (0.52-inches), extremely weighty in the hand at 6.6oz, and its look leaves more to be desired – so it’s the kind of thing you don’t buy for its looks. In all fairness, though, it’s fit for people who want a seriously rugged phone, seeing that its construction meets military standard 810g to give it protection against dust, shock, vibration, water immersion, and even solar radiation – in the event that ever occurs in your lifetime, of course.
Sure, it’s more than capable of surviving drops onto the pavement, but the softer toned rear plastic scratches very easily – whereas the rubbery coated surfaces do a better job of masking them. Unlike past ruggedized Kyocera smartphones we’ve reviewed, the Brigadier doesn’t offer a removable back cover, so it’s a closed design we’re dealing with here. Of course, this particular decision helps to solidify its protection even further, but we have to constantly remind ourselves that its microUSB and 3.5mm ports need to be securely covered – to ensure that it survives a dip under water.
Looking around the sides of the phone, we spot its power button, microphone, dedicated speakerphone key, microSD & nanoSIM slots, microUSB port, separated volume controls, lanyard spot, and a handy programmable key. Going with the conventional layout, it also features physical Android buttons beneath its display – something that’s a rarity nowadays. Rounding things out, there’s an 8-megapixel camera with LED flash in the rear, and a front-facing 2-megapixel one.
Kyocera’s Sapphire Shield glass is utterly impenetrable from being scratched!
Let’s get the specs out of the way, shall we? First, the Kyocera Brigadier packs along a fairly sizable 4.5-inch 720 x 1280 IPS-LCD display, which gives it a respectable pixel density count of 326 ppi – making fine text easy to decipher. Needless to say, the specs aren’t astounding, but we’re really shocked to see the display achieving a maximum output of 610 nits of brightness. That’s mighty impressive, as many of the brightest displays tap out at usually 450 nits! This makes it easily readable even when the sun very powerful. Furthermore, its color temperature of 7047 K is also very good, but colors, on the other hand, aren’t as accurate as we’d like – such as yellow, which has more of a greenish tone to it, but nothing too bad.
Now that’s out of the way, let’s go back and focus our attention on the Sapphire Shield glass that’s laid over the display – giving it a virtually scratch-proof quality. Corning’s Gorilla Glass 3 has proven to be resilient to scratches, but Kyocera’s Sapphire Shield glass proves to be really superior in our experience! Purposely scratching it with a sharp object, having the phone rub against our keys while in our pocket, and even dropping it onto the pavement, they all hardly put any signs of wear to the glass. Even rolling the phone around in sand does nothing to penetrate the resilient Sapphire Shield glass from showing any scratches!