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In the public safety sector, mission-critical communications must get through, as the information is highly important to the first responders. While many smartphones now feature IP68 certification, indicating a level of protection against water and dust, most are still vulnerable to drops. Samsung has unveiled a new rugged smartphone – but unlike the Galaxy S9, people won’t be able to buy the device, ever. The smartphone will be deployed to frontline emergency staff such as police officers, firefighter and paramedics as part of the roll-out of the Emergency Services Network (or ESN) in the UK after Samsung was chosen to supply phones for the network by the UK Home Office late last year.

The current ESN services, known as Airwave, will be phased out and replaced by ‘Public Safety-LTE’ 4G, which will allow for new features such as live video broadcasting and quicker access to records and intelligence, as reported by techradar.com.

The new Samsung smartphone is likely to be based on an existing Galaxy range (most likely the A or J-series, and definitely not the Active version of the Galaxy S9). Its features include a push-to-talk button and the largest battery on any Samsung phone: a massive 4500mAh removable unit that can be swapped out in the field.

The smartphone has a back cover held by a single screw, pogo-style connectors for instant charging, a USB port, physical navigation buttons (great for use with gloves), front and rear cameras and a triple LED flash.

This rugged phone can take more than a few knocks thanks to an IP68 rating and MIL-STD-810G compliance.

Samsung has recently unveiled also its Galaxy Tab Active2, a rugged tablet designed for mobile workers who conduct business outdoors or beyond office walls, including in the field, industrial locations, and harsh weather, according to businesswire.com.  The device provides easy access to essential functions in extreme conditions—such as high/low temperatures and wet environments—and advances seamless workflow by combining high durability and LTE connectivity with a range of innovative capabilities for business users.