A tough notebook that's fully loaded and portable
(IDG) -- In keeping with the ever-growing demands of a government on the move, Panasonic Personal Computer Co. plans to release to the government market the industry's first fully ruggedized, ultraportable notebook.
The company's small Toughbook 17 notebook will be sure to catch the eye of those federal employees on the go and warriors in the field. The notebook, available here at Comdex, not only is ultraportable at 3.8 pounds, but it also is easy to use, offering a full feature set -- with the exception of a CD-ROM drive, which is optional. The Toughbook 17 is Microsoft Corp. Windows-based and meets Military Specification MIL-STD 810E for shock, vibration, dust and water resistance.
It sports an 8.4-inch SVGA TFT 800-by-600 dots-per-inch resolution active-matrix color screen with antireflective coating, which makes the screen easy to view even under adverse light conditions. A touch-screen version also is available.
The Toughbook 17 ships with an Intel Corp. 300 MHz mobile Celeron processor, 64M of SDRAM and a 4.3G hard drive encased in Panasonic's signature shock-absorbing gel casing.
Not to be outdone by its competitors, Panasonic has included a NeoMagic NM2200 video controller card with 2.5M of VRAM, a PC Card slot and an integrated 56 kilobits/sec modem and a 3400mAH battery for longer life, which comes in handy out in the field.
True to form, Panasonic has followed the design and function of its larger ruggedized notebooks. A titanium case and ruggedized handle are built around this diminutive notebook, which, along with flexible cable connections, will guarantee that the notebook can withstand small falls and bumps. The Toughbook 17 is 1.7-inches high, 9-inches wide and 7.4-inches deep.
To round out its feature set, Panasonic offers an integrated wireless connectivity option that enables users to connect to internal or external networks. The wireless service will run on Mobitex, DataTAC and Cellular Digital Packet Data networks. This feature is especially useful for professionals on the road.
If you're looking for a notebook that's not only ultraportable but completely rugged, start here because Panasonic has set a new standard for this type of notebook. At an estimated street price of $3,189, Panasonic has packed value as well as functionality into this system.
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