Cat B40 – a dumbphone with maximum attitude (smartphone review)

The Cat B40 is a dumbphone, well, a feature phone that is IP68, IP69, drop-resistant, has big tradie glove-friendly alpha-numeric buttons and is perfect for rugged use.

Cat came to our attention when researching Waterproof phones – fact or fiction (smartphone guide), and it is the only brand that goes further with IP69 (protected against close-range high pressure, high-temperature spray downs).

I call it a dumbphone because it is not an Android or iOS phone. It is like the good old Nokia feature phones of ‘yore’ that can:

  • Store Contacts (on the phone)
  • Send and receive SMS
  • Make phone calls and keep logs
  • Has a fit-for-purpose camera and gallery
  • Cat Apps (Torch, World Clock, Stopwatch, Unit Conversion, Audio/Video Media Player, Sound recorder and Organiser)
  • FM Radio (needs 3.5mm headset plugged in)
  • Clock and Alarm
  • Calendar
  • Calculator
  • Games (Doodle Jump, Crossy Road, Stick Hero, Bubble  Party Mix, Super Pet Twist, Football Cup)

Unfortunately, no Nokia Snake!


  • Manual
  • Website
  • RRP: $149 but seen at $120
  • IP 68 (1.2m for 35 minutes) and IP69 (pressure spray)
  • MIL-STD 810H – tough
  • Drop test 1.8m
  • Operates -25 to +55° C
  • Hygiene – Antibacterial case, bleach, alcohol and soap and water compatible
  • 1800mAh battery with USB-C 2.0 port (data transfer and charge). Charger not supplied. Charge time is about 1.5 hours. Talk time is 11 hours. Standby time is 30 days.
  • 2MP rear camera (no flash) – user selectable resolutions, Night Mode and custom settings. It is fit for purpose – not a high-res camera
  • 100+ Lumen torch
  • 4G LTE 1, 3, 7, 8, 20, 28 (all Australian)
  • Dual SIM and dedicated microSD to 32GB
  • BT 5.0 (no Wi-Fi)
  • 3.5mm jack
  • Earpiece mono speaker and rear speaker (still mono but for music and hands-free)
  • 64/128MB RAM/ROM – limited storage
  • 145 x 62 x 18mm x 157g

CyberShack’s view – If a rugged phone is what you need, the Cat B40 is it

This phone is used worldwide by emergency service workers as it works on 2/3/4G and is ultra-reliable. You don’t care what is under the hood as long as it does its job.

Cat also has Android smartphones, including the Cat S62 Pro with a Thermal Flir camera.

We won’t rate the B40 per se because it is unique, and none of our test software runs on the dumbphone. Suffice it to say that if you need this, then you know what to buy.

Why buy it?

It is not complex like a smartphone – probably in your muscle memory if you used a feature phone pre-2007.

It is rugged, bleach, chemical and germ resistant, and has a 100-lumen torch and buttons. The Cat B40 is simply about calls and texts under pressure and getting the job done every time.

And you won’t (can’t) catch a virus/malware as there are no patches or updates.

Why not buy it?

If you need Internet browser access – the 2.4” QVGA colour screen is not meant for it.

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