Tough tablets? Panasonic's got a couple of new ones to introduce at CES
2013. The Toughpad line of enterprise-grade tablets is gaining new
models this week: the Toughpad FZ-G1 (a 10" tablet running Windows 8
Pro) and the Toughpad JT-B1 (a 7" Android-powered unit). Both of them
follow the original 10" Android
-powered Toughpad FZ-A1 which became
broadly available late last year. Toughpad tablets are designed for
mission-critical and highly mobile
workers in fields such as the military, construction, healthcare, public
safety, utilities, retail, maintenance, supply chain logistics and
insurance. Perhaps not the best option for mainstream consumers, but
those who need something who can take a beating should take notice.
FZ-G1 ships with a 3rd-generation Intel Core i5-3437U vPro processor
(1.9GHz up to 2.9GHz), an SSD (128GB-256GB), between 4GB and 8GB of RAM,
an optional micro-SDXC slot, a 10.1" sunlight-viewable touch panel
(1920x1200), and a battery that can last up to 8 hours. It weighs
2.43lbs., and also offers Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, optional
embedded 4G LTE or 3G, USB 3.0, HDMI, Ethernet and GPS.
the JT-B1, that one ships with Android 4.0, a 1.5GHz dual-core Texas
Instruments OMAP4460, 16GB of ROM, 1GB of RAM, a microSDHC slot, a 7"
daylight-visible panel (1024x600), front-and-rear cameras, an 8-hour
battery, and a frame that weighs 1.2lbs. Toughpad tablets are
MIL-STD-810G tested for drops, fluid ingress and
temperature, to assure they deliver reliable performance under
circumstances that render typical tablets non-operational. Devices
feature daylight viewable screens, user-replaceable or serviceable
batteries, a stylus for signature capture and handwriting (on the FZ-G1
and FZ-A1 with 3rd party apps), and multiple options for peripheral
The 10" Windows
8 Pro-based Toughpad FZ-G1 will be available in March
starting at $2,899. The 7" Android-powered Toughpad JT-B1 will ship in
February starting at $1,199. The 10" Android-powered Toughpad™ FZ-A1 is
now shipping, starting at $1,299. Nope, not cheap, but again: these things can take a beating.