Back in December 2009, I wrote about the Telstra Tough™ (T90) – a ruggedised handset designed by Telstra and ZTE and built, as its name suggested, Tough.

Just over 15 months later, I was excited to test drive the latest Tough family member- the Telstra Tough™ 2 (T54)

Do you have to be a “tradie” to use this phone? Definitely not!

Telstra Tough 2
If you lead an active lifestyle, love the outdoors, want to take your phone camping, fishing or cycling, etc, then the Telstra Tough™ 2 is going to be high on your list of must-have phones.

With its IP54 rating, the T54 is water, dust and shock resistant.  While it’s  not designed to go swimming with you (this is definitely not a good idea for ANY phone or electrical device), the Telstra Tough™ 2 will not resemble the Wicked Witch from Oz and die when it gets splashed. The Telstra Tough™ 2 has a 2.4” Gorilla Glass  covered screen ensuring your phone’s display will live up to its “Tough” name. Gone are the days when a strategically placed scratch on your phone’s screen will haunt you for the life of your contract. Gorilla Glass is used on televisions, computers, smartphones and tablets.

The Telstra Tough™ 2 comes with more memory than its predecessor, now expandable to 16GB through the use of a MicroSD card – more than enough to store photos taken with the 3 megapixel camera.

As you would expect, the Telstra Tough™ 2 carries the Telstra Blue Tick – ensuring you will get great coverage from the Telstra Next G® network – no matter if you are in the city or out and about doing the things you want to do.

If you have been using the Telstra Tough™ (T90), the Telstra Explorer T165+ or the T165i Country Phone, and are ready to upgrade to the Telstra Tough™ 2, you will be pleased to know that you can use their existing in-car kit – all you need to do is change the cradle. The Bluetooth box and other parts are compatible with the new phone. As the Telstra Tough™ 2 has an external antenna port, you can also add an optional external antenna to the car kit to give you that extra coverage when driving.

To further assist your active lifestyle or fill in the hours on the job, the Telstra Tough™ 2 also comes with an FM Radio, GPS and something I find very useful in a noisy environment – a speakerphone that really gives clear sound.

The Telstra Tough™ 2 is exclusive to Telstra, and is available on a range of Post-Paid plans now.

For those of you wanting to purchase it on Pre-Paid – a network locked version will be available from 17 May for $299.

Telstra Tough™ 2 Features


UMTS: 850/1900/2100mHz
GSM: 850/900/1800/1900mHz


3.6 Mbps peak downlink rating. Actual speeds are less. (typical speeds of 550kbps –1.5Mbps)^


118mm x 53.5mm x 16mm




2.4” QVGA Colour Display

Talk Time

Up to 150 mins

Standby Time

Up to 250 hours

Additional Features

3 Megapixel Camera
Rated IP54 for water and dust protection
Shock Resistant
Scratch Resistant Display
Semi Transparent display for enhanced viewing in sunlight
Big buttons for easy dialling
Expandable memory up to 16GB
FM Radio
Blue Tick – recommended for Rural handheld network coverage

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