The AGM Glory G1 Pro is a rugged smartphone that takes durability, connectivity and features to another level!
I remember once crossing a small ‘pond’ while on a bike rides with my friends in Qingdao, China. It had been raining quite heavily but the crossing didn’t appear to be any deeper than normal, but as soon as my tyres hit the water I realised I was going to get seriously wet.
I’m no expert in erosion, but somehow the ground beneath the surface had been eroded away during the heavy rains meaning that while from the top side the water didn’t look deep, it was in actual fact way deeper than normal. There was no danger, I simply stopped and floated off my bike, and at the very same time my Blackberry (yes, that’s how long ago this was) floated from my pocket and bobbed away. The phone was eventually fished out and dried but it was dead! If only they made waterproof phones!
Well, now waterproof phones are ten a penny, and it’s not uncommon for even the most fashionable of flagship Apple or Samsung devices to have some level of water resistance, but even so, they’re still quite delicate.
While I have no concerns with carrying my iPhone with me while riding, I wouldn’t want to drop it in a rock garden, and I certainly wouldn’t want to rely on its battery power once the temperature begins to drop in winter.
Enter the AGM Glory G1 Pro
AGM is a manufacturer of rugged Android smartphones, and over the years has been carving out a name for itself as the brand to turn to if you’re environments are more severe than an air-conditioned mall.
The AGM Glory G1 Pro is the culmination of everything AGM has learned over the years of rugged smartphone development, all neatly packed into a smartphone with a glove-friendly 6.53in display. Not only is the 2340 x 1080 high-resolution display glove-friendly, but its cutting edge technology will even track wet fingers and avoid those glitch moments less versatile phones encounter in the wet.
And this is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to outdoors ready features, rugged durability and all out-processing grunt. The AGM Glory G1 Pro is so feature-packed that it’s difficult to know where to begin!
AGM Glory G1 Pro – Rugged Features
Ok, let’s first talk about the battery capacity and how that affects the rugged performance of this phone in comparison to a non-rugged phone. Large battery phones are nothing new, so to see a smartphone with a whopping 6200mAh battery isn’t so shocking, but what’s interesting here is how AGM have optimised the phone for use in lower temperatures.
While I haven’t been able to confirm this yet (an experiment will come) AGM claims that the 6200mAh battery will last 24 hours in temperatures of -27 degrees celsius. That’s impressive, especially when I’ve seen Samsung and iPhone batteries deplete in only a matter of hours due to sub-zero temperatures.
AGM has accomplished this by actually using the heat from the SoC to keep the internal temperature of the phone slightly higher. Using copper tubing inside the rugged body of the phone disperses heat generated by the Qualcomm chipset which protects the phone from extreme cold.
The body of the Glory G1 Pro, based on the design of the Starship Enterprise we kid you not, is suitably rugged with waterproof covers over each USB plug and SIM card slot. The tough design features shock-absorbing bumpers on each corner which is said to reduce impact shock by as much as 63%. The large screen is protected by a 0.3mm ‘floating frame’ design, a bezel that is raised slightly away from the high-resolution panel.
AGM also uses a technology called BGA, a Ball Grid Array underfill technology that is used internally to protect the internal components from shock. BGA is used to strengthen solder joints and reinforce components resistance to shock, vibration and thermal shock.
And then there is the body itself which is made of a material that uses fibreglass weave for increased strength without a huge penalty in weight. This all adds up to a phone that weighs 360g and is IP68/IP69K certified.
AGM Glory G1 Pro – Super Cool Features
Generally, when we look at a smartphone you have the design and the specifications and then a few software features that might be unique to the model, but the AGM Glory G1 Pro has a fair few party tricks to show off.
Perhaps the most interesting is the built-in thermal imaging camera. This isn’t a simple filter that gives the impression of heat vision but an actual thermal imaging sensor that can pick up heat from around 5m away.
It’s difficult to think what the average user might need thermal imaging for, but it’s certainly a very cool feature to play around with. Using its dedicated app, the thermal camera can be switched between modes to give different views. You can go for your classic Predator look or a dark green night vision view plus a few others too. The thermal camera can shoot still photos and video too, so any wannabe ghost hunters might want to check this out.
This version of the Glory also boasts a laser range finder. It uses a laser and an IR sensor at the top of the camera to measure distances. This might be a little more useful if you’re on a building site, or even doing some work in the garden. It could also be used to measure the gaps between jumps or even the height of a drop.
Other neat features include a 110db external speaker, which is nice and clear if a little lacking in bass and a powerful camera flash that doubles up as a flashlight. It’s a feature most smartphones have, but as you would expect from the AGM the light is much brighter and more useful.
AGM Glory G1 Pro – Tech Specs
On top of all these cool rugged and outdoors friendly features we also have a host of powerful smartphone specs that would make any flagship phone blush with envy.
AGM has teamed up with Qualcomm to provide the G1 Pro with an SM4350 SoC which offers GSM, CDMA, WCDMA, LTE and 5G network support. The system on a chip also gives the smartphone WIFI and Bluetooth, Ant+, an FM radio and support for GPS, A-GPS, Glonass and Galileo global positioning systems.
These days a smartphone needs to also double up as a DSLR camera replacement so it’s hardly surprising to see that AGM has delivered the camera goods too. The G1 Glory Pro is in fact a quad-camera phone and in addition to the thermal camera, there is a main 48 megapixel Sony sensor, a 20m Infrared Night Vision camera, and a 2 mega-pixel Macro camera. If you want to shoot selfies a front 16 mega-pixel sensor is on hand.
Other details include a hybrid SIM/SD slot for either 1 x nano SIM and 1 micro SD card or 2 x nano-SIM cards. The phone supports SD cards of up to 512GB but with 256GB of internal storage to play around with we don’t think you need an SD card for a while.
We’ve already mentioned the battery which is massive and thanks to OTG you’ll be able to charge other devices from your phone. You can also charge the phone either from a cable or wirelessly too. While NFC makes wireless payments or syncing to NFC enabled devices a breeze!
Last but by no means least is the Android 11 operating system which runs extremely smoothly thanks to 8GB of RAM!
So what is it like to use?
Well if you have used a flagship Android smartphone then you’ll find no surprises here and operating the phone is much like any other. The large display is responsive and works well with gloves, and the colour reproduction is fantastic.
The large display is perfect for watching back GoPro footage while out on a trail, typing with gloves on, or catching up on the latest bike news on Singletrack. The system is a stock Android installation meaning it doesn’t have a fancy skin or get any bloatware which slows the operation down. In fact, the phone is extremely fast thanks to the modern Snapdragon processor and a healthy amount of RAM.
Opening numerous, power-hungry apps do little to slow the AGM Glory G1 Pro down, and the only time we witnessed any slow down was when we opened the thermal camera and the sensor takes a second or two to fire up.
In terms of everyday use, I feel that the Glory might be a little on the large side for some users. Yes, it has a large display it also has a large battery, a hefty amount of protection and a raised external speaker on the rear. This gives the phone a maximum thickness of 23mm, combine this with the 173.8 x 84.2mm dimensions and you have one very large phone to handle. As someone who prefers a smaller phone, I do find the AGM a bit of a handful, but I also feel the Glory G1 Pro is going to be way more durable if I did manage to drop it in a rock garden or even land on it during a crash. I would be pretty confident that the AGM could easily survive some fairly significant abuse and still be able to make an emergency call if needed, I can’t say the same for my iPhone.
Things that could be better
- I understand the need for it to be so big, but it would be nice if there was a more compact version even at the expense of the large rear speaker.
- The 48mp camera takes greats still photos but isn’t as good as a flagship smartphone for moving subjects.
- The features are cool, but are they useful to you?
Things I loved
- The level of durability is very good. I would certainly be happy taking this with me for a big ride, or bike-packing adventure than an iPhone or similar.
- The thermal camera might not be ‘useful’ to me, but it’s a hell of a lot of fun.
There is certainly a market for phones like the AGM Glory G1 Pro, and these new handsets prove that rugged phones can be durable and offer long-lasting battery life while still delivering high-end performance. The G1 Pro has more processing power than a laptop I owned a few years ago, can survive at -27 degrees celsius and lets me play at being the Predator! It’s an awesome smartphone for the outdoor enthusiasts.
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