AT&T to sell rugged flip phone with push-to-talk Dec. 14 for $100

In a sign that the flip phone and walkie-talkie functionality are still popular with some workers, AT&T said it will sell the rugged Samsung Rugby III exclusively for $99.99 with a two-year agreement starting Dec. 14.

In a sign that the flip phone and walkie-talkie functionality are still popular with some workers, AT&T announced Thursday it will sell the rugged Samsung Rugby III exclusively for $99.99 with a two-year agreement starting Dec. 14.

The Samsung Rugby III rugged phone.

The flip form factor and compatibility with AT&T's Enhanced Push to Talk (a walkie-talkie service) create a sweet spot for businesses trying to equip field workers in a range of industries as well as outdoors enthusiasts.

The 2.4-in. touchscreen display on the Rugby III is small compared to many of today's smartphones, such as the new 4-in. iPhone 5. But screen size isn't the priority for potential users, who AT&T thinks will want the military ruggedness, which makes it waterproof, dust proof and shock resistant.

There's a dedicated button for access to PTT, which AT&T boasts allows communications with larger talk groups than before. There's also one-touch access to GPS navigation through AT&T Navigator, and a 3 megapixel camera.

AT&T also sells the Samsung Galaxy Rugby Pro.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His email address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

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