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Panasonic introduces two new rugged Toughbook computer

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Panasonic introduces next generation Toughbook, fully rugged computers featuring optional embedded 3G wireless broadband and bright notebook screens. The fully rugged notebook and tablet PCs include powerful processors, new security features, and enhanced daylight-readable displays crucial for mission-critical mobile field applications.

Panasonic, a leading provider of durable, reliable wireless mobile PCs, introduced two new rugged Panasonic Toughbook computers to the Australian market: the CF-19 convertible tablet PC and the CF-30 notebook.

Building on the success of Panasonic Toughbook’s predecessor models, the new fully rugged Toughbooks are equipped with Intel Core Duo processors, enhanced security, Bluetooth as standard, optional embedded access to next-generation 3G wireless data networks, and feature industry leading screen brightness.

As well as enhanced features, the MIL-SPEC certified notebooks incorporate Panasonic’s rugged features such as magnesium alloy cases, sealed keyboards and ports, flexible internal connectors and shock-mounting that deliver high levels of reliability in the industry.

With the CF-30, Panasonic delivers bright notebook display without compromising battery life. CF-30 boasts an industry-leading 1,000 Nit (candelas per square metre, a measure of brightness) LCD, providing the brightness of a fixed mount display in a portable computer.

The CF-30 has achieved a milestone in screen brightness, a feature critical for emergency services, military, utility field service technicians and mobile workers in all industries who are required to use computers in direct sunlight.

The CF-19 is also designed for enhanced readability, with a bright 550 Nit screen with a new low-reflection coating.

To safeguard valuable data and to enable customers to comply with increasing data security regulations, the new Toughbooks are as secure as they are rugged. Both the CF-30 notebook and CF-19 convertible tablet are equipped with a cable lock slot, Trusted Platform Module (TPM v1.2) security chip, and feature an optional fingerprint scanner. The CF-30 can also be configured with an optional SmartCard reader.

The new CF-19 and CF-30 Toughbook computers also feature backwards compatibility with existing vehicle mount solutions for previous generation Toughbooks (the CF-18 and CF-29), protecting the investments of existing Toughbook owners and easing their upgrade process.

Powerful wireless integration

The new CF-19 and CF-30 rugged Toughbook models incorporate a wireless-ready design that allows users to purchase, or upgrade to, embedded access to next-generation 3G data networks.

Also, due to improvements in global positioning system (GPS) technology, the CF-19 and CF-30 feature significantly improved GPS accuracy. This capability will benefit all users, whether they are navigating to their next assignment or coordinating the efforts of field personnel.

Rugged, reliable, connected

Both the CF-30 notebook PC and CF-19 convertible tablet are constructed of magnesium alloy and include shock-mounted screens and hard drives. The CF-30 notebook PC and CF-19 convertible tablet have a battery life of up to 8 hours with the standard battery.

CF-30 notebook PC and CF-19 convertible tablet are certified to the MIL-STD-810F standard. These military testing procedures ensure the notebooks withstand drops, shocks, vibration and extremes of temperature. In addition, the CF-30 notebook PC and CF-19 convertible tablet are sealed and rated at IP54 (ingress protection) level for dust and water resistance.

Touch screens allow for ease of use in vehicle-mounted environments and with applications commonly used in field environments. Multiple wireless technologies, WLAN, WWAN, GPS and Bluetooth ensure that users stay connected and easily located.

Total cost of ownership, the case for ruggedisation

According to Panasonic Australia, as leading Australian companies look to mobilise their workforce with field applications, the need for consistently reliable hardware in all environments increases. These new Toughbooks can harness new technologies, such as Telstra’s Next G wireless broadband network, along with offering ruggedised features designed to survive harsh treatment. This combination of features is effective in cutting downtime and increasing productivity.

CIOs and CFOs are increasingly recognising the importance of evaluating the recurring costs that accompany notebook failures over time, and deploying solutions that lower the total cost of ownership. Panasonic Toughbooks are renowned for having a low failure rate compared with other notebooks, and the deployment of Toughbooks in organisations like Coca-Cola Amatil and Telstra is testament to their reliability and durability.

A study by IDC showed that traditional non-ruggedised notebooks used by Telstra’s Advanced Services Group over a period of a four-year lease had an annual failure rate of 25 per cent compared with the Toughbook with an annual failure rate of only 1.5 per cent,.

IDC Australia also found that when mobile devices are used in outdoor conditions the possibility for failure increases. Standard notebooks will have more of a difficult time in an outdoor environment and will see a higher rate of component failure and damage than a ruggedised notebook PC.

The TCO of a notebook PC for outdoor users should take into consideration areas such as revenue and overheads lost due to downtime, failure rates, costs for technical support and reduced customer service levels.

According to Venture Development Corporation, any organisation whose mobile workers need to access or transmit information in mission-critical or field environments, should strongly consider deploying rugged mobile computers.

Devices such as Panasonic Toughbooks are engineered to be reliable and maintain connectivity. Venture Development Corporation’s research indicates that in many user environments the total cost of ownership of a rugged mobile computer is actually substantially lower than that of a non-rugged or commercial-grade computer.

Availability

Both of the new Toughbooks will be available from March 2007. These models are available through Panasonic Toughbook distributors and dealers nationwide.

Panasonic Toughbook CF-30 Notebook Computer: Key features and specifications

  • Intel Core Duo Processor L2400 (2MB L2 cache), Processor speed 1.66GHz, 667MHz FSB
  • 80GB HDD, shock mounted and removable
  • 512MB SDRAM (DDR2) standard, expandable to 4,096MB
  • Multimedia Pocket will accept optional Combo or Multi Drive, or second battery
  • Full Magnesium Alloy case with handle
  • 13.3" 1024 x 768 (XGA) transmissive, daylight-readable TFT Active Matrix Colour LCD with Touchscreen – 1000 Nit
  • Dimensions (mm): 302 (H) x 69.5 (W) x 285(D)
  • Weight: 3.8 kg
  • Battery Life: 8 hours, depending on usage conditions
  • Intel PRO/Wireless 3945ABG LAN Connection 802.11a/b/g, Bluetooth v2.0
  • Optional integrated WWAN
  • Optional Integrated GPS receiver
  • Security features include: Password Security: Supervisor, User, Hard-Disk Lock; Cable lock slot; Trusted Platform Module (TPM) v.1.2 security chip, optional finger print scanner, optional SmartCard reader
  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional SP2

Panasonic Toughbook CF-19 Convertible Tablet PC: Key features and specifications

  • Intel Core Duo Processor U2400 (2MB L2 cache), Processor speed 1.06GHz, 533MHz FSB
  • 80GB HDD (DDR 2)
  • 512MB SDRAM standard, expandable to 4096MB
  • Full Magnesium Alloy case with hand strap
  • Touchscreen PC version: 10.4" 1024 x 768 (XGA) transmissive, daylight-readable TFT Active Matrix Colour LCD
  • Tablet PC version: 10.4" 1024 x 768 (XGA) transmissive, daylight-readable TFT Active Matrix Colour LCD with Digitiser
  • 550 Nit LCD brightness (470 Nit with touch screen) with new Low Reflection Screen Coating
  • Dimensions (mm): 271 (H) x 49 (W) x 216 (D)
  • Weight: 2.25 kg
  • Battery Life: 8 hours, depending on use conditions
  • Intel PRO/Wireless 3945ABG LAN Connection 802.11a/b/g, Bluetooth v2.0
  • Optional external USB Combo drive
  • Optional integrated WWAN
  • Optional Integrated GPS receiver
  • Security features include: Password Security: Supervisor, User; Cable lock slot; Trusted Platform Module (TPM) v.1.2 security chip, optional finger print scanner
  • Touchscreen PC version: Genuine Windows: XP Professional SP2, Panasonic Handwriting, Software Keyboard, Display Rotation Tool
  • Tablet PC version: Microsoft Windows XP Tablet PC Edition 2005, Display Rotation Tool.

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