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Homtom HT20 Review: IP68 Smartphone For $130

Each Homtom product sports at least one astonishing feature that makes it competitive in a certain niche. For example, the Homtom HT6 comes with a 6250mAh battery that is unheard for such category handsets. We can even mention the Homtom HT10 that features an iris recognition scanner. We have also got acquainted with other handsets from this line including the Homtom HT17 and HT17 Pro, HT3 and HT3 Pro, HT7 and HT7 Pro. As you see, these handsets come in ‘pairs’, so when a new Homtom smartphone is launched, wait for the ‘Pro’ version as well. So though we are going to meet the next eye-catching handset from this brand dubbed as the Homtom HT20, it’s expected we’ll see the Homtom HT20 Pro very soon. Cross the fingers!

homtom-ht20-screen

The Homtom HT20 is known for its rugged housing. Its overall design hints we are dealing with a device ready to stand all the troubles. Honestly, I haven’t seen such a smartphone with sharp lineaments for a long time. Probably, the last one was reviewed by us and it was the Doogee T5. Thus Doogee has decided to bring this feature to its Homtom line too. Honestly, I don’t know whether there are many users wishing to get their hands on such a handset, but I guess if manufacturers will pack rugged smartphones with a decent features list and price it affordably, many will take it into account when looking for a new smartphone. Fortunately, the Homtom HT20 comes with a number of desired features including a 2GB of RAM. So when looking for a Homtom HT20 you will see many retailers promote it as a great option for those who want a durable handset with a big RAM and priced under $100.

Homtom HT20 Durability

The times when only a few manufacturers could attract customers via durable handsets have passed away. The market is full of rugged devices coming with IP67 or IP68 certifications. For example, we have already heard about the iPhone 7 that is waterproof and dustproof (IP67 – 1 meter for 30 minutes), the HP Elite X3 (IP67), the Samsung Galaxy Note7 (IP68) and many more. But all these handsets are coming to our ways from top brands and they have been designed to fight in the largest markets. I mean they sport many other outstanding features behind the durability and the latter is only one of them. As for the Homtom HT20, this smartphone can compete with the Mann Zug 5S+ (IP67), Ruggear RG740 (IP68), Blackview BV6000S (IP68) or the Rugtel Tank X10 (IP68). All these handsets sport a design similar to the Homtom HT20, they are equipped with weaker features and they are priced lower. Moreover, putting the HT20 next to the abovementioned products we’ll see the Homtom device is one of the best options to choose from.

The Homtom HT20 comes with an IP68 certification meaning it is waterproof, dustproof and drop resistant. Thus it features three proofing properties, as the manufacturer likes to say. First, it’s waterproof and can resist up to 30 minutes underwater up to 1m deep. Moreover, it will work properly in this situation, say you can take photos or watch videos. Second, to protect the phone from dust, Homtom has covered the headjack, USB port and speaker with dust proof materials like the filter mesh. And finally, the Homtom HT20 is resistant to smashes thanks to a magnesium alloy case, made with military-standard high density PC materials. Shortly, you can drop it from 1.2m and it will continue working as if nothing has happened. You should also know the phone comes with Corning Gorilla Glass screen protection, so no scratches are dangerous for it.

Homtom HT20 Design

The Homtom HT20 is not a standard smartphone in terms of design. It looks like a sports device, but the manufacturer has designed it in this way to show users they are dealing with a rugged handset. On the other hand, the company has had to come in with a business smartphone as well. Seems these two goals are inconsistent, so let’s see how the company has solved this puzzle.

The first thing we can mention on this handset is its unusual design. It has four rubberized bulges on sides to protect the phone when dropping. Those bulges, the back and the additional two covers on the top and bottom of the phone are made of a rubberized material that makes the phone very comfortable when holding in a hand. But I guess the main purpose of acting in this way is related with the durability of the phone. That’s not a secret neither plastic nor glass can’t protect the phone. Moreover, the back cover of the Homtom HT20 is decorated in style of Tron. However, there are also some metal parts like the bezels that are made of high-quality aeronautical metal crafted with a CNC technology, and I guess it’s been included in design to make the attachment more solid as well as to provide some business look to it. Moreover, it has been constructed with a help of a vacuum technology that makes the body be more compact and sturdy while boosting the dust and water resistances.

homtom-ht20-look homtom-ht20-side homtom-ht20-top

The front side of the Homtom HT20 carries the 4.7-inch screen that occupies almost 52% of it. This means the usable surface of the phone is not that large, but honestly, it’s been expected to see something like this, because the manufacturers has to hide many features under the covers to make it possible rate for the IP68 certificate. Anyway, you won’t find any capacitive buttons on the front. There are only three touch buttons under the screen that are active when the phone is unlocked. There is also a front camera above the screen for video chat options as well as selfies. I am not talking of standard sensors, notification LED and the speaker. The 3.5mm audio jack is hidden under the rubberized cover on the top, while the rest of ports are covered with similar materials as well. The volume rocker and the unlock button are on the right side The back is more than interesting as it carries the great looking (but not shooting) camera with a flash light, and a fingerprint scanner. Have you seen a rugged smartphone with such a feature? I guess none of you has such an experience. This is the next surprising feature of the Homtom HT20. There is also the brand Homtom printed on the bottom of the back.

homtom-ht20-colors

Obviously, the Homtom HT20 can’t be called a slim smartphone, but it comes at dimensions of 76.0×152.0x12.9 mm, thus it comes with a thickness thinner than the rest of durable handsets available in the market. Unfortunately, the manufacturer has found no solvation for its weight and it comes at 210 grams that is felt immediately once you hold it. At last, the Homtom HT20 is available in three color options – Army Green, Vibrant White, and Elegant Black. So if the last two colors can be accepted by those who are looking for a business smartphone, the first one is for other category users.

Homtom HT20 Features

This awesome handset sports a golden size of 4.7-inch display at a resolution of 1280x720pixels, thus we are dealing with a HD display. This screen size is thought to be the best for one-hand operations, and I have to say the Homtom HT20 is great when holding by one hand. This is a LCD IPS screen, thus this handset doesn’t have the shortcoming we can find on TN displays. Coming at 312 ppi pixel density the Homtom HT20 is great when viewing different media content. On the other hand, as I said above its screen is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass technology and it’s very difficult to scratch the screen via keys or coins.

When looking inside the Homtom HT20 we can see the manufacturer has packed it with attractive features as well. It’s powered with a MediaTek MT6737 64Bit quad-core High powered CPU clocked at 1.3GHz. This means it is great for gaming as well as multitasking. The processor comes with 4x ARM Cortex-A53 cores that we have seen on many popular devices like the Oukitel U7 Plus, Uhans A101, LeaGoo T1 Plus or the Asus ZenFone 3 Max. It is paired with a 2GB of RAM and ARM Mali-T720 MP2 550MHz GPU. Thanks to such a set the Homtom HT20 has scored 35.432 at Antutu v6 benchmark test. Thus its overall performance is better than 71% of all smartphones. This smartphone features a 16GB of internal memory that can be expanded up to 64GB via an SD card slot. Shortly, it can store over 3000 songs, 6400 photos and 220 videos. I think you won’t need more.

The Homtom HT20 is not so good when it comes to captyring photos and recording videos, as it is equipped with only an 8MP rear camera coming our way with Sony IMX219 Exmor RS, one of the most popular Sony’s CMOS image sensors seen on many handsets such as the Doogee Y300. However, it comes with a list of features including AF, continuous shooting, face detection, HDR, touch focus, self-timer and many more. As for video recording, it can do it at 30 fps that is not astonishing, but it is still satisfying. The Homtom HT20 also sports a 5MP front camera that can be great when taking selfies.

Like many other Chinese smartphones the Homtom HT20 comes with dual SIM support. But this is not the most interesting part in terms of connectivity, as the phone supports 4G LTE network. Thus you are given chance to enjoy a fast download speed, quick data transmission and so on. To make the connectivity option full the handset also comes with Bluetooth 4.0, WiFi (802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n), USB OTG and so on.

At last the, Homtom HT20 is packed with a 3500mAh battery, which should be enough to use your phone all day long doing whatever you want.

Homtom HT20 Software and Special Features

One of the mmost amazing features of this handset is the presence of very powerful Android 6.0 aka Marshmallow OS on it. As you know, this is the latest version of Android available in the market, and it’s pretty nice to see it available on such a handset. But its presence wouldn’t cost anything if the manufacturer doesn’t enrich it with different addition features.

homtom-ht20-software

The Homtom HT20 supports Lock Screen and Smart Gestures, thus you can unlock the phone and launch desired apps via smart gestures even not touching the device.

This handset also comes with a fingerprint scanner located on the back of it. It’s one of the fastest fingerprint IDs as it’s capable of operating just in 0.2 seconds. Honestly, it’s not the fastest scanner, but it is still respectable to see such a feature on such a budget smartphone.

Thanks to the MediaTek MT6737 chipset and Marshmallow OS the Homtom HT20 supports a more accurate GPS positioning. But this feature has been expected, because the Homtom HT20 is designed to be used in the most incredible situations, so this phone should have an accurate GPS function.

Finally, it has a flash light on the back that can be used not only when taking photos in dark conditions, but when you need a light.

Pros

  • Durability
  • HD Display
  • 2GB of RAM
  • Front Camera
  • Android 6.0
  • Price

Cons

  • Not regular design
  • Quad-core Processor
  • Rear Camera

Homtom HT20 Pricing and Final Words

There are a few shortcomings we’d prefer not to see on the Homtom HT20, but the latter is one of the most attractive rugged smartphones available in the market. Honestly, I don’t think it can compete with the top brands, but those users who are looking for a sportive looking smartphones with the best protective options the Homtom HT20 could be a great opportunity. Moreover, it’s priced at $130, which makes this handset be very competitive.

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Argam Artashyan

Back in 2010, he was dismissed from his position as a lecturer at the university. This made him get another job at his friend’s digital marketing company as a blog writer. After a few years, when he was thinking the article writing is his mission, Google pushed the Panda update and affected the company and websites he was working at. (Un)fortunately and surprisingly, he got an offer to head a large knitting factory. In 2016, he got his Ph.D. and resumed teaching at the University … and writing tech-related articles following his passion.

29 Comments

  1. Homtom HT20 is a good rugged phone like a Vkworld V3s which is a impressive safe made for elders.which is waterproof and dust proof,The 2.4 inches TFT display is also good for elders however the vkworld’s said that the device will be available for just $35.99.

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