Panasonic has introduced a new pair of its signature 'Tough' devices at MWC 2016. The pair of devices are very similar in form factor; 4.7-inch screened, ruggedized, handheld 'tablets' with voice call and data capabilities but one runs Android and one is a Windows 10 device. While they are labelled as tablets the size and cellular call capabilities would normally result in such devices being referred to as smartphones. Panasonic claims these are the smallest, lightest ToughPads to date, yet remain fully rugged and ergonomic.
The Panasonic Toughpad FZ-F1 and FZ-N1 run Android 5.1 Lollipop, and Windows 10 IoT Mobile Enterprise OSes respectively. They are targeted at postal and courier workers, warehouse, retail, manufacturing, field services and emergency services usage. Both of the devices share the following base hardware specification:
- 4.7-inch HD capacitive multi-touch daylight readable display
- Qualcomm Snapdragon Quad-core CPU
- 2GB RAM and 16GB of Flash storage built-in
- 8MP rear and 5MP front camera
- Dual-microSIM 4G LTE / 3G data and voice communications
- Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and NFC
- Audio: Triple microphone system with superior noise suppression technology and dual front speakers delivering in total up to 100dBA
- Standard battery offers up to 8 hours continuous operating time with extended battery available to double that
- Weight: 277g
- Dimensions: a 'slim' 16.3mm
As you would expect from a 'Tough' device these tablets have been tested to withstand drops from as high as 6ft/180cm, and are IP65 and IP67 certified for dust/water resistance. Panasonic has made some obvious design choices for the market these tablets are aimed at. An incorporated an angled barcode scanner, which you can see protruding at the top rear of the devices, makes them particularly suitable for various industries.
Accessories designed and ready for the Panasonic Toughpad FZ-F1 and FZ-N1 include; an optional Passive Pen or an optional Active Pen, a hand strap, cradle, holster, extended battery, vehicle docking solution and charging cradle stand.
The Android powered Panasonic Toughpad FZ-N1 will be available from June, priced at £1,268 plus VAT. The Windows version will be released later in the year at £1,291 plus vat. Both machines come with a three year warranty.