Telstra Tough Max for rugged types

100% human

Telstra has announced the Tough Max 2, a new smartphone designed for tradies, construction workers, miners, farmers, outdoor adventure enthusiasts, those with anger management issues, and anyone seeking extra protection and durability in a smartphone.

The phone is the second iteration of the reliable Tough Max made by ZTE.  So GadgetGuy went to ZTE to get the full specifications.

First, it is Telstra 4GX compatible – that means LTE Cat 6 for 300/50Mbps down/upload around most capital cities. 4GX is being rolled out to regional areas. Bands include B1, 3, 7, 8, and 28 – don’t try to use it on a competitor’s network.

Next, it has Telstra Bluetick and an external RF antenna connector to eke out the best possible signal in rural areas.

As a bonus it has Qualcomm Quick Charge 2.0 and Qi Wireless charge.

Finally, it is IP67 rated. That means dust/mud/snow proof and water immersion up to 1 metre.

So as a Tradies tool it measures up.


4G LTE 2100 (Band 1), 1800 (Band 3), 2600 (Band 7), 900 (Band 8), 700 MHz (Band 28) with 300Mbps downlink, 50Mbps uplink
3G UMTS 850, 2100 MHz with 42Mbps DL (HSPA+)
GSM 900, 1800 MHz
SIM Card Nano SIM, 4FF
Operating System Android 7.1.2
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 MSM8937 Octa core 4 x 1.4GHz + 4 x 1.1GHz

Adreno 505 GPU

Memory 3GB RAM

32GB Flash with >26GB user space

Up to 128GB microSD external storage

Display 5″, IPS, 1280 x 720, capacitive touch
Camera Rear 16MP rear camera with digital zoom, auto flash and HDR.

8MP Front-facing camera.

Video recording 30 fps @ 720p.

Audio codecs MP3, AMR-WB, AMR-NB, AAC, AAC+, EAAC+
Audio out Earpiece, Speakerphone & 3.5mm headset
Wi-Fi Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n/ac; Dual Band, NFC, Hotspot, Bluetooth 4.2
FM Radio Yes
Sensors 3 axis Accelerometer, 3 axis Magnetometer, Orientation, Ambient Light, Proximity
GPS A-GPS, Stand-alone GPS, GLONASS, Beidou-2
External Antenna For ZTE original and ZTE approved accessories, use only.
Battery 3000 mAh Li-ion not user replaceable. 3-4 hours charge from empty
Wireless Charging Qi Wireless charging supported
Talk Time up to 14hrs talk time
Standby up to 500 hours standby
Size/weight 144 x 71.5 x 11mm. 153g
Pre-installed Commonly used & standard Google Suite applications, Firmware Over the Air (FOTA) upgrade
In the box
  •     Phone
  •     AC Charger
  •    USB data cable
  •      Stereo headset with microphone
  •        Tempered Glass screen protector

GadgetGuy’s take

ZTE is a good smartphone manufacturer, and the durability of its original Max lived up to its name.

This is excellent for the purpose and Google being able to update the device over the air is a bonus.