Easyfone Shield+ review: Your rugged backup phone that works for seniors too
As phones get smarter, some of us yearn for peace of mind and a break from the days of the pre-mobile revolution. That doesn’t mean we don’t want to be connected. It’s just that we don’t want to be so connected, almost like we’re on the wire. But there might be ways to stay connected and find peace in nature or solitude. The Easyfone Shield tries to respond to this category and of course, to those who want to take their phone anywhere. And with a recent update, it’s also become more appealing to those who find a smartphone, or even a smaller cell phone, difficult to use due to their advanced age.
The Easyfone Shield+ is a waterproof, shockproof and dustproof phone with an IP68 certification. It looks like a rugged phone with screws holding the back panel in place and bumpers protecting the entire phone chassis. I haven’t tried it, but I’m sure the phone would have survived a fall from my fifth-floor apartment.
But another way to look at the phone would be to think of it as a Nokia-in-armor type phone – hopefully at least some of the readers would be from the days when Nokia was the pinnacle of what a phone could achieve. So it’s not an Android phone and there’s no large touchscreen to navigate. Instead, there’s a 2.8-inch IPS display that’s bigger than you’d get on a feature phone, but still a far cry from what most of us are used to by now. For older users, this means they don’t have to worry about what happens if the phone falls off the bedside table.
Below the screen is a full number pad, but with larger numbers that make more sense for seniors. It also works if you want to use it underwater or in the snow. There’s a prominent SOS button on the right that can be set to a trusted number. The 3.5mm audio jack above and the micro-USB port below are both protected by flaps. The power port here can be used to charge other devices which is a nice feature.
I had a hard time setting up the phone because both slots in this phone need old size SIM cards which I no longer had. I had to pull an old SIM converter out of one of my suitcases to get it to work. The other difficulty was getting back to using a keyboard. The frustration started with just unlocking the phone, which is as easy as it gets, but something we’re not used to doing anymore. So within hours of playing with this phone, I was convinced that it couldn’t be my main phone anyway, but it could become a good backup phone that supports my main device as well.
For those who like to hike or need to visit places where connectivity and power can be an issue, this phone will be a godsend. This phone’s not-so-large 2500mAh battery backup can last up to three weeks and can also help charge other devices during that time. The other nice feature is the flashlight which is powerful enough to get your bearings in a forest at night and is not on the back panel as you would expect on phones.
Interestingly, this phone comes with a unique charging station that makes it almost a landline for those who have limited need for a phone outside their home. Also, since the phone can be configured to only allow calls from certain trusted numbers, it works as a great device for seniors to stay in touch with their family wherever they are and avoid calls. unnecessary.
The Symbian-like operating system offers smart features like a music player, the ability to store files on an external 32GB card, Bluetooth connectivity and a camera. The camera is very old and is still a backup at best. One feature that works well for this phone is the built-in FM radio tuner.
At Rs 5,499, the Easyfone Shield+ is a good backup phone for those who find themselves more in tune with nature than city life and for those who no longer need a smartphone. No, it’s not a phone you would otherwise use unless you’ve reached a milestone in life and have devices to ditch all the conveniences. Even for those who drive a lot, it’s a good device to have in your car’s glove compartment for emergencies. And that’s clearly what this phone is all about, to be a rugged partner for those who like it rough. Only buy it if you have a specific use case for a phone that won’t die when dropped and die when you need it most.