Panasonic announced the U.S. launch of its fully rugged, 5-inch handheld tablets. The Toughpad FZ-E1, powered by Windows Embedded 8.1 Handheld, and the Toughpad FZ-X1, running the Android 4.2.2 operating system, are enterprise-class handheld tablets — with voice and data connectivity — designed for mission-critical mobile workers. With 14-hour hot-swappable batteries, FIPS 140-2 Level 1 security, and sunlight-readable HD touchscreens that work even with gloves, the Toughpad FZ-E1 and Toughpad FZ-X1 are purpose-built to improve efficiency and productivity for mobile professionals such as first responders, military servicemembers, and those in transportation and logistics, utilities, manufacturing, retail, and field services.
The Toughpad FZ-E1 and Toughpad FZ-X1 represent a significant expansion of Panasonic’s Toughpad line. Like Panasonic’s Toughbooklaptops and convertibles, Toughpad tablets are engineered to deliver performance, security, and reliability in extreme operating environments where consumer devices would fail. They are also built for easy integration into existing IT infrastructures and for smooth deployments and ongoing support, and provide organizations with longer life cycles, translating to lower total costs of ownership.
“An always-connected workforce is only as strong as its weakest link, and this is true whether on the shop floor or the battlefield,” says Rance Poehler, President, Panasonic System Communications Company of North America. “Our Toughpad FZ-E1 and Toughpad FZ-X1 build on the legacy of nearly two decades of rugged devices from Panasonic to accomplish the mission of keeping professionals in the most demanding work environments connected to the data they need to do their jobs, to one another and to the customers they are supporting.”
With resistance to drops of up to 10 feet to concrete, the Toughpad FZ-E1 and Toughpad FZ-X1 go beyond MIL-STD-810G specifications to assure in-field reliability. Both devices are fully sealed against dust and are submersible in up to 5 feet of water for up to 30 minutes, meeting IP65 and IP68 certification requirements. The devices carry an operating temperature range of -4° F to 140°F thanks to a built-in heater, and are also tested for resistance to impact, shock, vibration, altitude and extreme humidity.
Both the Toughpad FZ-E1 and Toughpad FZ-X1 are FIPS 140-2 Level 1 compliant, with OS-based enhanced security features to meet the needs of government and enterprise customers.
The devices’ numerous enterprise-grade features include a sunlight-readable, anti-reflective HD (1280x720) 10-point capacitive multi-touch screen that works even with heavy gloves, with a rain-sensing feature that allows for single touch use even in pouring rain. In addition to 8.0MP (rear) and 1.3MP (front) cameras, configuration options such as an integrated 1D/2D barcode reader and attachable magnetic stripe reader allow enterprises to customize the ideal tool for their workforces.
The Toughpad FZ-E1 and Toughpad FZ-X1 are the first devices in the Toughpad line to offer optional voice connectivity. Both models will be available with dual SIM slots and certified on leading mobile carrier networks, 4G LTE/3G/GPRS/CDMA2000 mobile broadband for voice and data. Push-to-talk service also will be available on specific networks and depending on service contracts. Standard on both models is Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, near field communications (NFC), standalone GPS and Bluetooth v4.0 (Class 1).
To ensure clear voice communication above engine or construction noise, the devices are equipped with intelligent noise cancelling and dual front speakers reaching a maximum volume of 100 decibels — about as loud as the average home stereo system.
A major requirement for enterprise mobile solutions is strong full-shift battery performance. With a 6200mAh battery providing up to 14 hours of continuous use based on Panasonic test conditions, the Toughpad FZ-E1 and Toughpad FZ-X1 are purpose-built to enable workforce productivity. A quick-charging feature allows for a 50 percent charge in just 1 hour and Hot Swap functionality allows a depleted battery to be swapped out for a fresh one without powering down the device.
Toughpad FZ-E1 and Toughpad FZ-X1: Key Features
Toughpad FZ-E1: Windows Embedded 8.1 Handheld
Toughpad FZ-X1: Android 4.2.2
Toughpad FZ-E1: Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 series 2.3GHz Quad Core
Toughpad FZ-X1: Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 series 1.7GHz Quad Core
Rugged Durability: MIL-STD-810G certified; tested for 10-foot drops to concrete; IP65 and IP68 certified fully sealed design (sealed against dust and submersible in water), operating temperature range of -4° F to 140°F
Handheld Portability: 15 ounces, 1.2 inches thin (standard configuration)
Industry-Leading Battery Life: Up to 14 hours of continuous use depending on usage conditions. Hot Swap functionality allows the main battery to be swapped without powering down
Enterprise-Grade Display: 5-inch sunlight-readable, anti-reflective HD (1280x720) LCD with high-sensitivity 10-point capacitive multitouch input. Glove-touch and rain-sensing features are included
Storage and Memory: 32 GB flash memory with 2GB RAM; and micro SDXC card slot
Connectivity & I/O: optional 4G LTE/3G/GPRS/CDMA2000 (voice and data); standard Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, near field communications (NFC), standalone GPS, Bluetooth v4.0 (Class 1), USB 2.0; optional integrated 1D/2D barcode reader; optional attachable magnetic stripe card reader; expansion area for peripheral connectivity
Camera: 8MP rear camera with auto focus and LED light; 1.3MP front camera
Security: FIPS 140-2 Level 1 compliant
Warranty: The Toughpad FZ-E1 and Toughpad FZ-X1 are backed by a 3-year warranty and U.S.-based customer support
Pricing and Availability
The Toughpad FZ-X1 with WiFi or mobile broadband data connectivity will be the first to hit the market in August 2014 at a list price of $1,799 (WiFi-only) or $1,849 (mobile broadband data). The Toughpad FZ-E1 with WiFi-only connectivity will also be available in August 2014 at a list price of $1,899, followed by the telephony and mobile broadband-enabled version with a target date of October 2014 at a list price of $1,999. The Toughpad FZ-X1 enabled for telephony and mobile broadband data will have a target date of January 2015 at a list price of $1,899.