Panasonic Europe has introduced a professional grade Android tablet - the Toughpad FZ-A1.
It's a rugged ten-inch tablet, designed with mobile business and government users in mind.
Like Panasonic's Toughbooks, the Toughpad has been manufactured to meet strict durability standards. It has a MIL-STD-810G rating for 120cm drops as well as an IP65 ingress protection rating for resistance to dust and water. The Toughpad FZ-A1 is also rated for use in extreme temperatures.
Security is just as important as ruggedness for the firm. The CPU in the Toughpad FZ-A1 has a dedicated, tamper-proof security processor, which should free up the multi-purpose CPU core for other tasks. The security CPU core handles software and data encryption, enhanced VPN, authentication, trusted boot and device management.
The device has a ten-hour battery (replaceable, no less), comes with Bluetooth v2.1 + EDR, 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, GPS and optional 3G mobile broadband offering up to 21Mb/s download speeds, and has a high brightness, 10.1-inch XGA, capacitive multi-touch, daylight-viewable screen with an anti-glare coating.
The Toughpad FZ-A1 will be available in the Spring of 2012 at an estimated street price of €850 + VAT for the standard model and €999 + VAT for the 3G model. Panasonic said a seven-inch tablet is planned for the second half of 2012.
“Consumers have enjoyed tablet computing for a number of years now with almost no uptake in the workplace due to fundamental design limitations. Now users in business and industry can also benefit from the ease of use and portability of tablet computing. Toughpad takes all the Toughbook experience of rugged computing we have gained since 1996 and focuses it into tablets designed for the workplace.” said Hiroaki Sakamoto, managing director, Panasonic Computer Products Europe.