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Review: Kyocera Hydro Elite for Verizon Wireless

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The Kyocera Hydro Elite is a decent little phone, but not without faults. Kyocera has a few key strengths to lend to its phones, and they are put to good use in the Elite.

The Elite is water resistant. To people who lead semi-active lifestyles, or are prone to losing their grip on their phones, this could be the only feature they need. In our tests, the Elite survived being dunked in water, beer, and milk with no problem. It's not rugged, though. The Smart Receiver technology means that phone calls can be heard pretty much anywhere you take the Elite. Thankfully, the Elite's strong signal performance means you'll always receive those phone calls. The Elite's battery life could be much better, though. Perhaps over time, using Eco Mode and MaxiMZR will deliver the adjustments needed to make it good.

The Android operating system and associated apps and services all function fine, for the most part. The Elite ran a little slow and felt a little bogged down from time to time, though. The camera is one app that felt especially sluggish. Its decent pictures and video make up for the slow performance a little bit.

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If you want or need an inexpensive Android smartphone that's water resistant, the Elite is a solid choice. If you need something more rugged or outdoorsy, you may want to look at Casio's latest G'zOne device.

Our Ratings

Battery Life
Hardware Usability
Hardware Quality
Interface Speed
Audio Volume

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