Panasonic Unveils Three New Rugged Notebooks

The new products include the ultra-portable CF-W5, the Tablet PC alternative CF-T5 and the thin-and-light desktop replacement CF-Y5.

The three notebooks include magnesium alloy cases, flexible internal connectors and shock-mounted and removable hard drives. The computers are tested to withstand a one-foot drop, while the hard drives are rated to survive a fall of 30 inches. The trio also incorporates wireless-ready designs for accessing data networks from major wireless carriers, including Sprint, Verizon and Cingular Wireless.

The ultra-portable W5 includes an integrated DVD/CD-RW combo drive, 12-inch LCD screen, and a low-voltage Intel Core Solo processor. The computer, which weights 3 pounds, has a battery life of more than eight hours, Panasonic said.

The T5 includes a 12-inch touch-screen LCD and weights 3.5 pounds. The Tablet PC alternative has a battery life of 10 hours.

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Finally, the Y5 includes a 14-inch screen, built-in DVD/CD-RW optical drive, an Intel Core Duo low voltage processor, and multiple wireless connectivity options. The computer also includes a "spill-through" keyboard designed to reduce the risks of liquid damage.

The Panasonic Toughbook W5 and T5 are expected to ship in October, and cost $1,899 apiece. The Y5 is set to ship in December and cost $2,199.