The Chinese phone maker Doogee seems to be producing more and more rugged phones. The S50 is a pretty good device that I recently reviewed but today I wanted to show you guys a bit cheaper slimmed down version of it – the S55. It offers great specs, rugged body and a huge battery for the price of just about $150.
The phone ships with all the usual stuff and some extras include a screen protector.
Once you pick the phone up, it’s obvious this is a rugged phone since it is larger, thicker and heavier than your usual smartphone.
That is because Doogee S55 has the IP-68 rating meaning that it is water and dust resistant. Also, the rugged body assures that the phone will survive a few accidental drops. Unlike some other budget rugged phones, there are flaps that cover the ports to avoid water damage.
Unlike on the Doogee S50, the headset jack flap is easier to open.
The overall build quality is solid as the phone is built to last. Despite a huge footprint, it’s quite comfortable to hold the phone in the hand. Also, the device is relatively thin considering a huge battery inside.
Battery lasts for a long time, just like on the Doogee S50. You can get up to 18 hours of screen on time under light usage but if you use the phone more intensively, you should expect to get about 11 hours of SOT. It takes over 3 hours to fully charge the phone with the supplied charger which is a pretty good result considering the size of the battery.
I found the 18:9 display to be quite nice and sharp despite the fact it’s only HD+. Also, the sunlight legibility is above average.
Other features include a dual-camera system on the back, nice and tactile buttons and a fingerprint scanner that is quite accurate but there display could light up faster. On the front, there is a single camera system as opposed to dual selfie cameras found on the Doogee S50.
Removing and inserting the side-mounted SIM card tray is quite easy. You just need to open up the flap and use a sim ejector pin to remove it.
I’m a bit disappointed that the capacitive buttons are not backlit and there is no LED notification light. Lastly, the loudspeaker quality is not really good. The sound is tinny and flat just like on the Doogee S50.
As far as hardware goes, the S55 ships with a pretty nice looking list of specs, considering the price. The gaming performance is good considering this is a budget rugged phone. You should be able to play most of the games without significant lag but obviously, there will be some skipped frames and stutter in some titles.
As opposed to Doogee S50, the S55 ships with the Android 8 out of the box. The user interface preserves stock look but there are some design changes and added features like gesture and motion controls that actually work quite well. After using the phone for nearly 3 weeks, I can assure it is fast and smooth most of the time.
The overall image quality is not really good. There could definitely be more detail and the colors are usually washed out. Low light pictures do not look great either. Same can be said about selfies and the portrait shots that have artificial background blur effect.
1080p video quality is mediocre as the footage comes out very shaky.
Selfie video can be recorded only in 480p, which is really frustrating. On the other hand, the quality of the footage is quite decent.
As for connectivity, the Doogee S55 is pretty good. Call quality is decent, there were no issues with signal reception and GPS is accurate while using for navigation.
There is also a gyroscope sensor on board so you can watch 360 content or play VR games with this phone.
The Doogee S55 is quite a decent budget rugged phone but it definitely has a few flaws to consider.
The main shortcoming is poor image quality. You should also know that the capacitive buttons are not backlit, there is no LED notificaitpn light and the loudspekaer quality is not great.
On the other hand, you get a nice-looking water and dust resistant phone that is well-built and it can take a beating, the Doogee S55 is quite a fast device on the daily basis and you can even play some 3D games on it. Finally, the battery life has been great thanks to a huge 5500mAh power bank.
At the end of the day, if you are looking for a budget rugged phone, the Doogee S55 might be a good option to check out if you don’t mind a few shortcomings.