(Pocket-lint) - There is no point lying to us, we know you see yourself as one of those rugged types. Well you if you are then BT thinks it has the phone for you with its BT Elements cordless landline handset.

Why? Well because the elements bit stands for the fact that it can supposedly stand up to them, although we aren't sure whether we want to set fire to it or bury it in the earth.

Designed, we presume to be used around the garden, the phone features a 1000m range from the base station outside meaning you should be able to use it in your shed (read pub down the road) and a 150m distance indoors.

For its rugged approach you get a splashproof design, and most interestingly a torch so you can see where you are going when it's dark, however no answer machine.

All sounds good doesn't it? Well it is and it isn't. The splashproofing is certainly welcomed, however the BT Elements phone doesn't go the full hog and give you a rubberised casing, so if you drop it, its still likely to break or scratch.

As for the torch, the three LEDs are bright and will certainly light up a dark room, but when was the last time you thought - "Oh I'm on the phone let me just grab that torch", that said it was nice, is a strange sort of way, to know that there was always a torch to hand as long as you could find the phone.

Technology wise and this won't be making you ditch your mobile phone anytime soon. The BT Elements features SMS support, although for only up to 15 messages at a time and a contact book of 50 names, although you'll have to transfer them manually rather than via a sim card reader like BT's Reveal handset, and as we've said, there's no answer machine.


So what's the verdict, well the BT Elements is good, but not great. We like the range, we like the splashproofing - especially with all the rain we are getting - and we like the torch for some reason.

It would have been good to see a rubberised casing for true ruggedness and a more streamlined design as well as an answer machine option.

Overall this serves its market well, but it's one hell of a niche market - i.e., those who think they might need a phone in the garden while in the shed expecting to spill some water because it's dark.

Writing by Stuart Miles.