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Phones

Phones for sport

I'm a keen runner and go for a run at least twice a week. What mobile phone is hardy enough for outdoor activities?

I'm a really keen runner and go for a run at least twice a week. I'm looking to upgrade my phone in the next few months and want to invest in a phone that will survive knocks and falls. I've gone through several phones in the last couple of years, and would like one that won't shatter the first time I drop it. Which mobile phone do you recommend?

Sally Becket

Exercise and outdoor activities are good for you, but they're not always good for your phone. Some phones are so delicate that they'll break quite easily if they're dropped or even sat on. There are a few phones coming out in the coming months, however, that should survive your weekly jog.

If you're impatient to get a phone right now and money is no object then I would recommend buying a Vertu handset. These are not only some of the most expensive handsets available, but are also some of the strongest. In December last year, The New York Times tested how strong the £3,000 Vertu Ascent Motorsport phone was by running over it with a Porsche. Incredibly the phone survived, but for that much money you'd expect it to do something special.

If you're not willing to remortgage your house or sell your car then fortunately there are alternatives. First up is the Nokia 5500 Sport, which is due to launch this autumn. The phone has a stainless steel and rubber casing that's dust- and scratch-proof, and features a pedometer, a torch, a microSD slot, an MP3 player, an FM radio and a 2-megapixel camera. It even has a fitness coach application that talks to you as you're training, as well as large buttons for easy MP3 player control and a text-to-speech function that will read out your text messages so you don't need to stop training.

Next up is the Sony Ericsson W710i Walkman phone, which will be available by the end of this year. This phone also has a rubber casing, but there's no stainless steel in the case, making it less drop-proof than the Nokia 5500. It will still take a few knocks, though. Like the Nokia phone it features a pedometer, an expandable Memory Stick micro slot, an MP3 player, an FM radio and a 2-megapixel camera. This device is more music-centric though, featuring Sony Ericsson's Walkman software and dedicated music keys.

Finally, there's the BenQ-Siemens M81, which is also due for launch in the autumn. It features rubber casing, a 1.3-megapixel camera, an MP3 player, a microSD slot and a torch. Although it has fewer features than the others, it will probably be cheaper, so it could be a good budget option.