Sonim XP3 Flip Review: Strong Durability & Water Resistant

Need some reassurance on your next big phone purchase? Use our Sonim XP3 Flip review as a reference before you burn a hole in your wallet.

Sonim XP3 Flip Review

The Sonim XP3 Flip phone was released in April 2019. Recently, flip phones have started to take the market by storm once again. Famous for its sleek, ultra-slim design, flip phones were the perfect gadget back in the days.

Touchscreen smartphones might have taken over stores, but there’s always room for reliable flip phones. One device that has appeared is the Sonim XP3 Flip phone.

Unlike the flip phones we were acquainted with in the past, this gadget is different. The Sonim XP3 Flip boasts an exterior that can withstand extreme situations.

But does the phone live up to its claim? Find out more by checking out our Sonim XP3 Flip review. You can make your device after reading our insights.

Key Specs

Sonim XP3 specifications:

  • Weight: 195g
  • Dimensions: 112 x 58 x 27.9mm
  • OS: Proprietary
  • Screen size: 2.6-inch
  • Resolution: 320 x 240
  • CPU: 1.1GHz Quad-core, Qualcomm Snapdragon 210
  • RAM: 1GB
  • Storage: 8GB
  • Battery: 1,500mAh, Removable
  • Camera: 5MP


Sonim XP3 Flip Phone
Sonim XP3 Flip Phone

The Sonim XP3 Flip phone is a clamshell-style device that we can quickly bring around comfortably. It has a very mini build that’s much smaller than the palm of our hands. With a lightweight, the phone is portable enough to slide into the tiniest of shirt pockets.

At first glance, the phone has a fascinating, unique look. It’s an ultra-rugged flip phone that’s covered with protection from top to bottom. It gives us the impression that it can withstand heavy conditions. The phone’s body is also waterproof, so we wouldn’t need to be afraid of it getting damaged.

What sparked our attention is the phone’s removable back cover. To remove it, we would require a screwdriver to open the bolts. It does take quite an effort just to take off a simple back cover. But we reckon this is an extra precaution taken to protect the internal components of the phone.

Apart from that, the phone has the layout of typical flip phones. It comes with a 1 to 9 keypad layout with specific vital buttons. The left side of the phone features a push-to-talk button and volume controls. Meanwhile, the phone’s right side has a standard USB-C charging port and a 3.5mm headphone jack.


Sonim XP3 Open

The Sonim XP3 Flip phone has two display screens. The first one is the phone’s main 2.6-inch display screen, showing the phone’s overall interface. With a small phone, there’s bound to be a matching small display screen. Despite its miniature size, it’s adequate space to see the app interface and type our messages. Since it’s a flip phone display, don’t expect it to be a touch screen like modern smartphones.

The second one is a miniature display located on the top cover of the flip phone. This little screen displays several essential pieces of information. A few examples of the provided information include the date, time, connection, battery levels, and such.

The main display screen has a resolution of 320 x 240, accommodating 154 pixels per inch. The display uses a Quarter Video Graphics Array (QVGA) technology to enhance the screen’s quality. QVGA is designed for phones that have small-screens, so don’t expect high-definition quality. Since there is a small number of pixels, the colors can be hard to look at.

The Sonim XP3 Flip display screen is layered with a Corning Gorilla Glass 3. This layer of protection is ideal for a phone that claims to resist rugged conditions. The glass combines damage-resistant materials that protect the display screen. We do not have to work about scratches if we accidentally drop the phone.

Read also: Sonim XP3 Flip User Manual


Sonim XP3 Front View

The Sonim XP3 Flip phone only has one camera, which is the 5MP rear camera. As far as megapixels go, we’re not too pleased with 5MP. We understand that developers might have put a great emphasis on the phone’s build. But a rugged design should be complemented with purposeful functionality as well.

A phone camera is not just used to take photos of beautiful landscapes. It is also a valuable tool to take pictures of emergency situations that we’re in. It can be a great advantage if the photos we’re taking are clear and sharp. Unfortunately, a 5MP camera, especially for a phone like this, does not do justice.

The 5MP rear-facing camera has a fixed focus feature. This allows the phone to take focused shots only when it’s near an object. Unfortunately, the camera does not automatically focus from one subject to another. The rear camera has an LED flash that’s useful for taking photos under low-light conditions.

The rear camera can also be used to take videos. We can record video with 720p quality at up to 30 frames per second. A handy feature that comes with the camera is that it can stream videos. But considering the camera quality, we’re not too entirely sure that videos will come out fluidly.


Sonim XP3 Left Side

The Sonim XP3 Flip phone has internal memory storage of up to 8GB. This shouldn’t be a massive problem as the device is not too application-centric. However, out of the 8GB provided, only 4GB is available to users. This can be a downer if we have massive data that we would like to keep.

The phone compensates for the lack of internal memory storage by letting us expand its memory. We can do this by inserting a microSD card into the phone’s card slot. The phone allows users to expand the memory of up to 128GB. It’s more than enough space to store a bundle of memories in one small device.

Read also: Samsung Galaxy XCover FieldPro Review: Sturdy, Strong Design


Sonim XP3 Right Side

The Sonim XP3 Flip phone utilizes a Qualcomm Snapdragon 210 processor. Recognized as a common entry-level feature, the processor ensures the phone runs smoothly. It promises adequate performance in whatever function we choose to operate the phone. Typically designed for modern smartphones, the processor guarantees power efficiency without sacrificing quality.

This quad-core chipset runs on a CPU clock speed of up to 1.1GHz. With this in mind, we’re seeing a relatively fast phone system. What makes this processor an integral part of the phone is how it affects the device’s connectivity. The processor accommodates a network coverage reaching up to 4G LTE. Wherever you are in the world, we’re bound to get network coverage.

Our Sonim XP3 Flip review would not be complete without discussing the phone’s RAM. Per our checking, the phone has a RAM of 1GB. For those who may not be familiar with RAM, allow us to provide a simple explanation. RAM is short for Random Access Memory, a part of the phone that stores temporary data.

Ideally, it is better to have at least 2GB of RAM so that the phone can operate freely. But in this case, the Sonim XP3 Flip phone has small RAM storage. This could pose some problems if the phone is running on too much data. However, considering the phone’s intended purposes, 1GB should be sufficient to get it running.

The Sonim XP3 Flip phone runs on a proprietary operating system. The particular operating system used is created based on the Android Open Source Project. A proprietary OS is explicitly designed by developers of the phone for unique purposes.

Unfortunately, the problem with a majority of the proprietary OS is that it is not flexible. These systems are not to be altered or modified by phone users. This leaves us with few options to personalize the phone’s configurations. Users who usually spend their time changing the phone’s system will not be too pleased with this OS.

The Sonim XP3 Flip phone only has two sensors installed: an accelerometer and a barometer. The accelerometer is regarded as one of the most sensors a smartphone should have. The sensor is responsible for detecting the user’s movements. Additionally, it lets us know what speed we’re currently moving at.

Meanwhile, the barometer has an entirely different function. Instead of detecting movement, it responds to the phone’s surrounding environment. The barometer measures a few things, such as air pressure and height levels. This sensor also plays a part in predicting weather changes. Without a barometer, the phone will not be able to provide us weather forecasts.


The Sonim XP3 Flip can reach up to a 4G-LTE network with multiple bands for coverage. But if we’re not in the mood for a data connection, no worries. We can also use the phone’s Wi-Fi feature to stay connected. Meanwhile, if others require our data connection, the phone can be transformed into a mobile hotspot.

One remarkable feature that comes with the phone is its Push-to-Talk button. By pushing this button, we can connect with others as if we’re using a walkie talkie. This feature comes in handy if we ever need to get in touch with someone else as soon as possible.


Sonim XP3 Back View

The Sonim XP3 Flip has a 1,500mAh removable battery. With a small battery capacity, we’re not surprised that the phone cannot last long. The battery withstands up to 17.8 days on standby. Practically speaking, the battery only lasts up to 21 hours if we talk on it continuously.

It’s neither the most impressive nor powerful battery choice. But if we’re considering the phone’s functions, it’s a device that’s mainly used for communication. It would be rare to use the phone to watch videos or browse the Internet all day. The battery capacity might be low, but it is a reasonable decision made by developers.

Is the Sonim XP3 Flip a Good Phone?

All things considered, the device promises durability and resistance. Unfortunately, we have concluded in our Sonim XP3 Flip review that the phone is lacking in specifications. It may have the essential features that we need to get our things done. But with the quality these specifications present, the phone may not be worth the price.

Selling at a retail price of $190, we think the Sonim XP3 Flip is quite overpriced. The phone may have been designed for practicality and functionality. But for the price we’re paying, it would have been nice if the essentials are a bit more enhanced. We suggest users try looking for something worth their money in the markets.

Sonim XP3 Flip Pros

  • Durable build
  • Secure back cover
  • Huge expandable storage
  • Push-to-Talk button available

Sonim XP3 Flip Cons

  • Poor camera quality
  • Small RAM size
  • Small battery capacity