Panasonic Planning To Launch Android ToughBook Tablet


The ToughBook tablet -- Panasonic's first to run on Android -- will feature a 10.1-inch XGA multi-touch display that's designed to be readable in bright sunlight, with satellite-based GPS, "full-shift" battery life and optional embedded 3G/4G mobile broadband. The tablet will also come with an active stylus to allow workers to capture digital signatures from customers while they're in the field.

Like Panasonic's ToughBook notebook PC line, the ToughBook tablet will be aimed at enterprises that need a device that can withstand the rigors of field usage. This is especially important with tablets, which are much less durable than their notebook PC brethren and have virtually no chance of surviving a fall onto a hard surface from more than a foot or so.

Panasonic expects its ToughBook tablet to catch on with government agencies, companies with large mobile field teams, and IT administrators and executives for whom data and device security is of paramount importance. The ToughBook tablet's security is embedded at the hardware level, Panasonic said in a press release, without providing additional details.

Rance Poehler, president, Panasonic Solutions Company, says enterprises are eager to embrace tablets but are frustrated with the shortcomings of tablets currently on the market. "The vast majority of tablet devices -- regardless of the OS -- are engineered for consumers and don’t offer appropriate levels of security and durability or the functionality needed for business use," Poehler said in a statement.

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No word yet on ToughBook tablet pricing yet, but the fact that it runs Android means it wil likely be less than Panasonic's ToughBook H1 Field, an Atom-based model that runs Windows and is selling for around $2,900 on and