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Rugged PC News and Developments [ Submit news] [News archive]
Replacing the Atom N2600
Two or three years ago Intel's Atom N2600 was the upgrade of choice in many tablets and industrial systems where earlier Atom chips just didn't quite make it. Now it's the N2600's time to be replaced. Which chip will become the new ubiquitous go-to processor that provides a good balance of performance, features, and economy? [See Replacing the Atom N2600] -- Posted Thursday, August 27, 2015

Xplore Technologies hires former Panasonic and Getac sales executive
Xplore Technologies announced it has hired David Dunkak as vice president of U.S. commercial sales. Mr. Dunkak joins Xplore from Getac, where he spent six years and was most recently senior director of North American commercial sales. Prior to Getac, Mr. Dunkak spent 15 years at Panasonic, where he was responsible for the professional services organization. Prior to that, Mr. Dunkak was at Toshiba America Information Systems, where he recruited and developed new resellers to promote portable computers. [See Xplore media release] -- Posted Thursday, August 27, 2015

IDTI: Touch panel market to reach US$31.9 billion by 2018
According to DigiTimes, touch panel manufacturer IDTI estimates the touch panel market to reach US$31.9 billion in 2018. The optimistic prediction is based on touch panels used in all-in-one (AIO) PCs and smartphones, in addition to newer applications such as vehicles and industrial applications. [See DigiTimes] -- Posted Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Handheld’s NAUTIZ X8 ultra-rugged field computer gets new customizable add-ons
The Handheld Group announced that it now offers three expansion packs for its ultra-rugged Nautiz X8 handheld computer. A Long Range Bluetooth (LRBT) Expansion Pack allows long-range communication up to 300 meters, using a LRBT u-blox module. A Barcode Expansion Pack features a Zebra SE4750SR imager with LED aimer. And there is also a Nautiz X8 Basic Expansion Pack with an empty add-on cap for an extension of your choice, allowing users to install custom accessories under the cap using the proprietary interface. The new Nautiz X8 expansion packs will be available in September. All cap versions are designed to retain the Nautiz X8 IP67 classification. [See Handheld Group media release] -- Posted Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Getac wins hard-fought rugged laptop bid
Providing a rare insight into the often hotel contested bids for computing equipment procurement, the Gaston Gazette reports how the City Council of Gastonia in Gaston County, North Carolina, decided, in a tight split-decision to buy 160 new rugged laptops from Getac instead of Panasonic. The city's CIO said that Getac's "sterling reputation of service with the city" convinced him to recommend Getac. [See "City to spend $309,000 on new 'rugged' laptops for police"] -- Posted Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Xplore continues to expand engagement with one of the world's largest airlines
Xplore Technologies announced it has received additional orders for its XC6 Windows tablet PCs from one of the world’s largest and most well-known airlines. The newest order is in addition to an order announced in December 2014 and is an expansion of the previously announced multi-million dollar project. The airline is using the tablets to supply to the airline’s ground crews and expedite the baggage handling process at airports across the United States. [See Xplore media release] -- Posted Saturday, August 22, 2015

Gartner: iPhone up in worldwide smartphone growth slowdown
According to Gartner, worldwide smartphone sales had their lowest growth rate in Q2 2015 since 2013. A total of 330 million were sold, compared to 290 million in Q2 2014. Samsung's marketshare fell from 26.2 to 21.9%, Apple's rose from 12.1 to 14.6%. In terms of OS marketshare, Android fell from 83.8 to 92.2%, iOS rose from 12.2 to 14.6%, Windows fell from 2.8 to 2.5%. Once prominent smartphone vendors like Motorola and HTC were no longer in the top-10 of overall cellphone sellers. [See Gartner media release] -- Posted Friday, August 21, 2015

Catavolt and Sonim Technologies partner to deliver mission-critical apps to rugged devices
Catavolt, a rapid mobile app development platform provider for the enterprise, and Sonim Technologies, which makes ruggedized mobile phones, announced a partnership to help deliver enterprise mobile apps on ruggedized devices to enterprise customers and industries where extreme environments are common, and apps must be secure, highly responsive and their devices capable of withstanding higher than average levels of wear and tear. [See Catavolt media release] -- Posted Thursday, August 20, 2015

VDC Research: Rugged handheld market emerging after years of contraction
According to VDC Research, the rugged handheld market is slowly emerging from a period of considerate correction and contraction that lasted for nearly two years. Rugged manufacturers are working to deliver devices that cater to the more consumer-oriented tastes of user interface and overall user experience. VDC Research addresses these issues and more in its latest report on The Global Market for Rugged Handheld Computers and Smartphones for Line-of-Business Applications. -- Posted Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Panasonic launches ATEX-certified versions of its rugged 5-inch FZ-E1 and FZ-X1 Toughpads
Panasonic announced ATEX certified versions of its fully rugged 5-inch Windows and Android handheld tablets designed for use in potentially hazardous industries such as oil and gas, mining, chemical and pharmaceutical manufacturing. The Panasonic Toughpad FZ-E1 ATEX and FZ-X1 ATEX tablets bring together the best of the handheld, smartphone and tablet market and have been certified for above ground, Zone 2 Working Space use in potentially explosive gas environments (Acetaldehyde, Gasoline, Ethylene). [See Panasonic Europe media release] -- Posted Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Discontinued products deployed in space?
Perusing our various rugged systems news sources, we came across an exciting "GE Rugged Proves Itself in Space" media release from GE Intelligent Platforms. The release announced that GE's CR11 single board computer was successfully deployed and fully operational onboard the International Space Station as part of experiments by the European Space Agency (ESA). That's exciting indeed, except that the CR11, which was based on an Intel Core Duo chip (five generations behind Broadwell), was discontinued the end of August 2013. [See "GE Rugged" Proves Itself in Space] -- Posted Monday, August 17, 2015

Xplore reports fiscal Q1/2016 financials
Xplore Technologies announced revenues of US$24.04 million for Q1 of 2016 (up from US$8.27 million for Q1 2015). Q1 2016 showed a net loss of US$244k compared to a net loss of US$551k in Q1 2015. Philip Sassower, Chairman and CEO of Xplore, said, "This quarter represents a seismic shift in Xplore’s growth. With the acquisition of the Motion product line, our team was able to deliver growth that could have taken years to achieve organically. We could not be more excited with both the record revenue attained and with our bottom line performance, which, but for certain one-time costs related to the Motion Acquisition, would have generated net income.” [See Xplore financials] -- Posted Saturday, August 15, 2015

Case study: Utilizing industrial computers in the automotive industry
When Erdrich — a German-based automotive supplier that manufactures complex metal parts and subassemblies for the automotive industry — set up its new $40 million manufacturing facility in Dublin, Georgia, they needed fixed-mount industrial PCs for their forklift operators to handle the high quantity of inventory movement. Their solution included noax C12 IPCs and SAP-based application software. [See case study "Utilizing industrial computers in the automotive industry"] -- Posted Friday, August 14, 2015

VIA launches ruggedized VIA AMOS-3005 industrial fanless PC
VIA Technologies announced the VIA AMOS-3005, the latest addition to its range of rugged VIA AMOS Series industrial fanless PCs. Combining a 1.2GHz Eden X4 quad-core processor, VIA VX11H media system processor, and VIA Chrome 640 GPU, the AMOS-3005, which starts at US$539, includes dual Gigabit Ethernet, VGA, HDMI, DIO, USB 3.0, serial, and optional Wi-Fi, GPS, and 3G. [See VIA AMOS-3005 page] -- Posted Thursday, August 13, 2015

Full review: ARBOR ASLAN W722C Panel PC
Panel PCs are the unsung heroes of rugged computing that are counted on to reliably run and do their job, without breaking down or holding things up. Panel PCs, however, are also likely to fill important roles in emerging intelligent factory operations, where evolved interface and connectivity options are required. RuggedPCReview examined ARBOR Technology's new ASLAN series of wide-screen panels to see what they can offer and how they fit into "Industry 4.0." [See review of the ARBOR ASLAN W722C] -- Posted Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Xplore: To be or not to be? Rugged without regret
"To be or not to be?" asks Xplore's latest blog entry. It's not a Shakespearean matter of life and death here, but contemplations over paying extra for rugged tablets versus paying less for standard consumer gear, which will likely end up costing more in the long run. [See Xplore's: To be or not to be? Rugged without regret ] -- Posted Tuesday, August 11, 2015

How Does Law Enforcement Use Tablets?
Law enforcement is increasingly using advanced computing and communications technology to perform its job. This means highly durable, rugged computing gear that's also flexible, customizable, highly mobile and, unfortunately, costly. MobileDemand just published a case study of how the Missouri town of Sullivan is going about it, and how they managed to satisfy both their budget as well as their functional requirements with rugged tablets. [See How Does Law Enforcement Use Tablets?] -- Posted Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Full review: JLT VERSO+ 10 vehicle computer
Fixed-mount vehicle computers must provide all the power and connectivity of a laptop or desktop, while being able to handle extreme temperatures and near constant shock and vibration. RuggedPCReview analyzed JLT Mobile Computer's VERSO+ 10, the company's latest addition to a line of rugged and highly configurable vehicle-mount and fixed-mount computers. Available with either a basic Atom chip but also a high-powered Intel Haswell Core i5, the very compact and exceptionally well-made VERSO+ 10 has a bright 10.4-inch capacitive multi-touch screen that even works with thick gloves. Verdict: a most impressive product indeed. [ See full review of the JLT Mobile VERSO+ 10] -- Posted Monday, August 10, 2015

New: Winmate adds M133W 13.3-inch full-HD procap Broadwell-powered rugged tablet
Winmate has added the large-screen M133W to its growing lineup of rugged tablet computers. The M133W has a full HD 1920 x 1080 glove/rain/stylus-capable capacitive multi-touch screen, substantial onboard connectivity, dual cameras, a full complement of sensors, and it's available with three CPU options, including an Intel "Broadwell" Core i5-4200U. The M133W has a wide operating temperature range, is IP65-sealed, and can accommodate two internal SSDs. [See description, analysis and specs of the Winmate M133W] -- Posted Monday, August 10, 2015

Xplore retains Tom Wilkinson as Interim CFO
Xplore Technologies announced it has retained Tom Wilkinson as interim CFO. Mr. Wilkinson has worked both as a CFO and as an auditor, including as partner in charge of Xplore’s audit process for five years while at PMB Helin Donovan, where Wilkinson was a founding partner. [See Xplore media release] -- Posted Friday, August 7, 2015

All JLT Mobile rugged computers compatible with Windows 10
JLT Mobile Computers, Swedish developer and manufacturer of rugged computers for demanding environments, announces that all JLT rugged computers have been tested to be compatible with Microsoft Windows 10. A free upgrade to the latest software is available for users with Windows 7 Pro through Microsoft. Windows 10 will shortly be provided directly from JLT for both new and existing clients as well. [See JLT Mobile media release] -- Posted Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Zebra acquires ITR Mobility and iFactr
Zebra and Twin Cities-based IT consulting firm ITR Group announced Zebra's acquisition of ITR Group's mobile consulting and software development firm, ITR Mobility and its mobile platform, affecter is a cross-platform software solutions that provides easy migration path for legacy mobile software applications. [See Zebra media release -- Posted Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Advantech launches full support of Microsoft Windows 10 IoT
Advantech announced its support of the newly released Windows 10 IoT (Internet of Things). Windows 10 IoT — a version of Windows 10 designed specifically for use in small footprint, low-cost devices and IoT scenarios that is similar to Windows Embedded — will power a range of intelligent connected devices from smaller equipment such as gateways or mobile point-of-sale units, to industrial devices like robots and specialty medical equipment. Designed to connect through Azure IoT Services, Windows 10 IoT offers enterprise-grade security along with native connectivity for machine-to-machine and machine-to-cloud scenarios. [See Advantech media release] -- Posted Tuesday, August 4, 2015

What happened in rugged computing 5 years ago: August 2010
In August 2010, RuggedPCReview examined in detail one of the first available Android tablets, the inexpensive Augen GenTouch78. We also reviewed the new Handheld Algiz 7 rugged tablet, the Advantech PIT-1501W patient service terminal and PPC-157T panel PC, reported on Psion Teklogix's exemplary service, and design wins for both Motion and Getac in Australia. Intel introduced the Atom D425 and D525, Oracle sued Google over Android, LXE announced the Marathon field computer and said it had its best sales quarter since 2008. RuggedPCReview said that "Off the cuff, the way we see it is that Android has a better than even chance of becoming the OS of choice for tablets and other mobile devices". Xplore reported revenues of US$5.1 million for the quarter ending June 30, 2010, and General Dynamics Itronix introduced the Android-based GD300 wearable computer. [See August 2010 news archive] -- Posted Sunday, August 2, 2015

Xplore expands relationship with leading U.S. railroad transportation company
Xplore announced it has been awarded an additional Xplore Bobcat tablet computer order from a leading U.S. railroad transportation company which uses the fully-rugged Bobcat tablets to achieve cost savings and increase mobility in its yards. The railroad originally selected the Bobcat for its fully-rugged IP65 rating and extended 14-hour battery life — both useful features for efficient operations in a railroad yard. [See Xplore media release] -- Posted Friday, July 31, 2015

IDC: Worldwide tablet market continues to decline
According to IDC, the worldwide tablet market declined 7% on year in the second quarter of 2015 with shipments totaling 44.7 million units. Marked by little hardware innovation and limited vendor portfolio updates, the market also declined 3.9% compared to the first quarter of 2015. In terms of shipments, Apple remains first with a 2Q15 24.5% marketshare (2Q14 27.7%), Samsung is second with 17% (2Q14 18%), Lenovo third with 5.7% (2Q14 4.9%), Huawei 4th with 3.7% (2Q14 1.7%), tied with LG. -- Posted Friday, July 31, 2015

Thai-based home product center goes mobile with rugged Panasonic tablets
The Panasonic Solutions for Business Blog reports how Thailand's HomePro Centre chain was looking for mobility solutions to help employees more efficiently track inventory, pricing, promotions, and other in-store operations. Like many retailers, they experimented with supplying their sales team with consumer-grade tablets, but this proved to be an expensive proposition, and HomePro ended up going with the Toughpad, Panasonic’s enterprise-grade rugged tablet line. [See Thai-based home product center goes mobile with rugged Panasonic tablets] -- Posted Thursday, July 30, 2015

MobileDemand: World's first rugged tablets with Windows 10
MobileDemand, a worldwide provider of innovative, Windows-based rugged tablets, says it has announced the availability of Windows 10 across its family of devices. This includes the cloud-based xTablet Flex 10 and Flex 8, the rugged and sealed xTablet T1400 and T1600, and the fully rugged xTablet T1200. As with Windows 8, MobileDemand says it is the world’s first rugged device provider to offer tablets with Windows 10. [See MobileDemand blog] -- Posted Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Case study: Handheld Group's rugged Algiz 7 tablet saves huge at Carlton Plants in Oregon
Carlton Plants in Dayton, Oregon, grows millions of individual trees and shrubs on its 1,750-acre property. Workers have switched to using the Handheld Group Algiz 7 and a custom Microsoft Access database to track plant numbers and health. As a result, they’re saving countless worker hours spent on recording and re-recording items due to weather-damaged records, and have opened up time for exciting new projects. [See Carlton Plant case study] -- Posted Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Intel defines six desktop market segments
According to DigiTimes, Intel, in a bid to promote desktop CPU platforms, has divided the whole market into six segments in terms of market positioning and price: "Enthusiast tower" caters to gaming, video/audio, and high performance, "mainstream" designates a high performance-to-price ratio, and then there are "All-in-one (AIO) PCs," "Mini PCs (NUC)," "Portable AIO PCs" and "Compute Sticks." Once can only guess how many additional CPUs Intel will release to cover all those platforms, and wonder if Intel will also further stratify the mobile markets. -- Posted Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Trimble rugged handhelds being used for traumatic brain injury assessment system
The image on the right shows the Trimble Juno T41 rugged handheld computer, which is being used by a company called BrainScope, as it has developed assessment software for football concussion injuries directly on the field. BrainScope has been awarded more than $27 million of U.S. Department of Defense research contracts for the development of its TBI ( traumatic brain injury) and concussion assessment technology and has received significant funding from private investors to accelerate its development efforts. [See Brainscope media release and Trimble Juno T41 page] -- Posted Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Arestech adds rugged in-vehicle computing product line
Arestech announced their new in-vehicle computing product line. The first offering is the high-performance VBC-6060 that's powered by an Intel Core i7–4700­EQ CPU, has a wide operating temperature range of -13 to 158°F, CAN Bus, multiple PoE ports for direct-connecting video surveillance devices, MIL-Std-810G shock and vibration testing, all in a 11.4 x 3.60 x 9.40 inch box that weighs just over 10 lbs. [See Arestech VBC-6060 product page] -- Posted Tuesday, July 28, 2015

HZO and Dell partner to protect the new Latitude 12 Rugged Tablet
HZO, Inc, which provides manufacturers and device makers with a nanotechnology solution that inoculate electronic components and devices from damage and failure caused by exposure to any kind of liquid, announced it has partnered with Dell to protect its new Latitude 12 Rugged Tablet. HZO says that the new rugged Dell tablet is one of the first devices with HZO Protection that is built to withstand long-term exposure to the harshest weather and industrial conditions. [See HZO media release] -- Posted Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Samwell releases speedy Intel Bay Trail-powered 10.4-inch RUGGEDBOOK 752 with excellent connectivity
A substantial tech upgrade from its predecessors, the Samwell Ruggedbook PC-752 provides full Windows functionality in a rugged tablet form factor. Of compact size and weighing just over three pounds, the PC-752 is considerably lighter than most full-size rugged tablets. Its 10.4-inch resistive touch screen with 1024 x 768 pixel XGA resolution offers plenty of space to run Windows comfortably (a 9.7-inch procap screen is also available). There is excellent wired connectivity on board, all the connectors are standard size, and there is a wealth of wireless functionality, and also dual integrated cameras. [See description, analysis and specs of the Samwell RUGGEDBOOK PC-752] -- Posted Monday, July 27, 2015

Xplore wins $1.4 million contract
Xplore Technologies announced it was awarded a $1.4 million contract from a leading provider of top-quality construction rental equipment and tools. The customer purchased Xplore’s Motion F5te and F5m rugged tablets and desktop docking solutions. The tablets will be used by mechanics to make them more productive and less reliant on traditional desktop PCs. [See Xplore media release] -- Posted Friday, July 24, 2015

Full review: Getac V110 Gen 2 rugged convertible notebook
Getac's second generation V110 is a remarkably thin and light rugged convertible notebook computer that's been upgraded with Intel "Broadwell" 5th generation Core processors and a variety of functional and technology improvements. Benefitting from the latest version of its LumiBond display layer bonding process and a new glove-capable operating mode, we found the second gen V110 an impressive upgrade to an already compelling mobile computing solution for tough jobs. [See full review of the 2nd gen Getac V110] -- Posted Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Dell launches Latitude 12 Rugged Tablet
Dell announced the Latitude 12 Rugged Tablet to complement its line of rugged laptops and rugged convertible notebooks. The new tablet has a 11.6-inch capacitive multi-touch screen that can be operated with gloves, weighs 3.6 pounds, is IP65-sealed, and is available with ATEX and C1D2 certification for use in hazardous locations. Based on Intel's super-efficient Broadwell-M processors, the Latitude 12 Rugged Tablet has up to 12 hours battery life. Modular expansion can cover even unique interface requirements. Dell's new tablet starts at around US$1,600 and will be available by the end of July. [See description, analysis and specs of the Dell Latitude 12 Rugged Tablet] -- Posted Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Datalogic announces preliminary Q2 2015 financials
Datalogic announced preliminary sales revenues for Q2 2015 of 135.2 million Euro, up from 115.8 million Euro Q2 of 2014. Of the divisions, Automated Data Capture, which includes Datalogic's mobile computers, did 93.4 million Euro, up 21% from the 76.8 million Euro from the same quarter last year. Industrial Automation did 34.8 million Euro, up from 32.1 million Euro the same quarter last year. [See Datalogic financials press release] -- Posted Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Panasonic explains the EMV/NFC relationship
Panasonic's Solutions For Business Blog explains how Magnetic Stripe Reader (MSR) technology has been the primary payment method for credit card carriers for decades. EMV (Europay, MasterCard, Visa) and NFC (near-field communication) payment technologies have made their way onto the landscape and are becoming more integrated into mainstream payment methods. [Read about the EMV/NFC Relationship] -- Posted Monday, July 20, 2015

Logic Supply unveils rugged in-vehicle NVR
Logic Supply announced their brand new Intel Core i7-4770TE-powered MX1000 fanless, rugged in-vehicle NVR. The company says it is the first rugged mobile NVR to be certified by Milestone for use with their XProtect video management software. This system allows Milestone's global network of resellers to offer a reliable, in-vehicle-ready security device with support for up to 25 HD cameras. [See Logic Supply media release and MX1000 product page] -- Posted Sunday, July 19, 2015

Added: Cipherlab RS30 Series rugged Android smartphone
CipherLab introduced the RS30 Series, a modern, nicely sized Android 4.7-inch procap smartphone that's significantly tougher than consumer phones and can be used for much more demanding scanning and data collection jobs. A very bright Gorilla Glass 3-protected screen (510 nits), HF RFID/NFC, and a choice of either a linear imager, a laser scanner, or a 1D/2D imager complement the offering. [See description, analysis and specs of the CipherLab RS30 Series] -- Posted Friday, July 17, 2015

Budget-friendly sub-meter GPS solution available through Juniper Systems
Juniper Systems announced it will be exhibiting at the upcoming Esri User Conference in San Diego July 20–24. Most GIS professionals know that attaining sub-meter GPS accuracy typically comes with a hefty price tag. Juniper Systems, on the other hand, will show its budget-friendly, easy-to-use sub-meter GPS solution using Esri ArcPad, Effigis’ EZSurv Post-Processing software, and its ultra-rugged handheld computers. [See Juniper media release] -- Posted Friday, July 17, 2015

GammaTech to feature rugged tablets and notebooks at NAPO 2015
GammaTech announced it will showcase its latest mobile rugged tablet and PC options for the public safety industry at NAPO's (National Association of Police Organizations) 37th Annual Convention in Savannah, Georgia from July 19 to July 23. GammaTech will exhibit its popular models — the R11 rugged tablet (see our review), the R8300 fully rugged notebook (see our review), as well as the U12Ci convertible and SA14 semi-rugged notebook (see our review) — at its booth to leading public safety communications professionals. [See GammaTech site] -- Posted Friday, July 17, 2015

Added: Amrel Rocky DF7A rugged 5-inch Android handheld
Amrel has introduced the Rocky DF7A fully rugged Android handheld. Essentially a tech update to the earlier Rocky DF6 that was available with either Windows Embedded CE or Android, the new DF7A is Android-only and uses capacitive multi-touch instead of a resistive digitizer. Featuring a bright sunlight-readable 5-inch SVGA display, the IP66-sealed DF7A excels in flexibility and configurability, making it suitable for numerous heavy-duty field deployments. [See description, analysis and specs of the Amrel Rocky DF7A -- Posted Thursday, July 16, 2015

Finnair pilots use purpose-built Panasonic enterprise tablets
Panasonic's Solutions for Business Blog describes how Finnair pilots are using Panasonic Toughpad FZ-G1 rugged enterprise tablets for their electronic flight bags, or EFBs, to replace all-in-one user manuals for their aircraft. Finnair started with a review field of 20 different Windows 8 tablets before they decided on the Toughpad. [See Finnair Pilots Stay in the Air with Purpose-Built Enterprise Tablets] -- Posted Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Full review: ARBOR Gladius 8 compact rugged tablet
With the Gladius 8, ARBOR Technology presents an elegant, rugged and very compact 8-inch class Android tablet for IoT (Internet of Things) and numerous other applications. RuggedPCReview examined the 1.35-pound Gladius 8 in detail and found it to be a technologically advanced multi-purpose handheld tablet computer with industrial-grade scanning and NFC capabilities, a very good 12mp camera, IP65 sealing, excellent drop and temperature resistance, and a bright 7.85-inch capacitive multi-touch display. [See full review of the ARBOR Technology Gladius 8] -- Posted Monday, July 13, 2015

AIS publishes video on benefits of modularity in Panel PC
American Industrial Systems published a new demonstration video focusing on the modularity of their premium and standard series of Intelligent Industrial Touch Panel PCs. The video presents the key advantages, features and benefits of modularity, a design approach that subdivides a system into smaller parts called modules that can be independently created and then used in different systems. [View AIS Benefits of modular design in industrial panel PCs -- Posted Monday, July 13, 2015

Digitimes voices concerns about tablet sales
In an article about supposed upcoming Apple products, Digitimes expressed general concerns about the tablet market: "With demand for tablets weakening a lot faster than expected, sales of iPad, white-box and brand tablets have all been seriously impacted recently. Strong popularity of smartphones with 5-inch and above displays plus the fact that [the] tablet is lacking new innovative applications are also major factors seriously undermining tablet sales." -- Posted Monday, July 13, 2015

British SuperGroup deploys 300 Datalogic Scorpio X3 handhelds
Datalogic announced that together with solution partner Symcirrus it has successfully completed a roll out of Datalogic Skorpio X3 mobile computers (see our review of the Scorpio X3) to fashion retailer SuperGroup Plc. The roll out of some 300 Skorpio X3 devices in store follows an earlier move by the retailer to automate its distribution centers with Datalogic Falcon X3 rugged scanners. [See Datalogic media release] -- Posted Friday, July 10, 2015

10 things to love about Windows 10
In a new entry on their Ruggedized Computing Blog, Mobile Demand points out that the launch of Windows 10 is just 20 days away, and lists ten features of Microsoft's new operating system most users will love. The list starts with the Start Menu being back and ends with the fact that Windows 10 will be free for most users who have a Windows 7, 8, or 8.1 license. [Read 10 Features of Windows 10 That You'll Love] -- Posted Friday, July 10, 2015

VDC Research: Uneven growth for rugged mobile market after Q1
According to VDC Research, the overall rugged mobile market has been on a rollercoaster ride since Q1 2015. The rugged notebook market shrunk to its smallest size in more than four years due to the weak European economy and new enterprise ruggedness requirements. The tablet market, though, surged nearly 40% year-over-year. Rugged handhelds, despite dominating the total rugged market, have been relatively flat. VDC Research's "Rugged Mobile Quarterly Shipments Q1 2015" report addresses what this overall imbalance means for the rugged mobile market for the remainder of 2015 and beyond. [See VDC press release] -- Posted Friday, July 10, 2015

Carlson Software releases Surveyor2—A faster, more powerful data collector for surveyors
Carlson Software has released its new Carlson Surveyor2, the newest model in its Carlson Surveyor line of data collectors. The Surveyor2 is paired with Carlson’s software to provide a powerful, complete solution for surveying, stake out, construction layout, and GIS mapping. The Carlson Surveyor 2 — manufactured by Juniper Systems and very similar to the Juniper Allegro 2 — has a 4.3-inch full-VGA display, runs Windows Embedded Handheld 6.5.3, is IP68-sealed, and offers up to 20 hours of battery life. [See media release] -- Posted Friday, July 10, 2015

Rugged Olixir mobile drives now with up to 6TB storage
Olixir reports that its semi-rugged and rugged Mobile DataVault drives now come in capacities up to 6TB, with 8TB coming soon. The removable/external drives offer 1200G shock protection and can be used with either a USB 3.0/eSATA cable or a 5.25-inch docking bay. Elixir optionally offers a FIPS 140-2 encryption and environmental dust filters. Note that some of Elixir's drives offer extreme temperature options and are built to pass MIL-STD-810 drop tests. [See Elixir mobile DataVault] -- Posted Friday, July 10, 2015

Added: ARBOR Gladius G1052C
ARBOR Technology announced the Gladius G1052C, a major technology update of its prior Gladius G1050. The Gladius 1052C is a rugged Intel Bay Trail powered 10.4-inch Windows tablet with capacitive touch, a 23-key keypad for rapid data entry, and broad data capture functionality. A 800 nits sunlight-readable version is available. [See description, analysis and specs of the ARBOR Gladius G1052C] -- Posted Thursday, July 9, 2015

Advantech reports revenue growth
According to Digitimes, embedded systems manufacturer Advantech reported consolidated revenues of US$120 million for June 2015, representing a 20% increase over June 2014. Total sales for the first half of 2015 were US$606 million, up 7.95% compared the first half of last year. -- Posted Thursday, July 9, 2015

Winmate: Technology that Streamlines Port Logistics
Winmate's latest newsletter is entitled "Technology that Streamlines Port Logistics." It describes the challenges of keeping track of and managing the numerous assets arriving, departing and moving around ports at any given time. From gateway logistics to transportation and delivery of goods to warehouse inventory management, having the right ruggedized, industrial-strength technology ensures rapid, accurate data collection and communication between transporters, dispatchers and receivers. [See Winmate's Technology that Streamlines Port Logistics] -- Posted Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Microsoft announces restructuring of phone hardware business
Microsoft announced plans to restructure the company’s phone hardware business (i.e. the former Nokia Devices and Services business) to focus and align resources. This includes a reduction of up to 7,800 jobs, primarily in the phone business. The new layoffs are on top of the 18,000 layoffs Microsoft announced July 2014. [See Microsoft media release] -- Posted Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Xplore secures $1.5 million order for Danish Ambulance service project
Xplore Technologies announced that the Danish Ambulance service will deploy almost 600 Motion C5 tablet PCs as part of an innovative “Intelligent Ambulance” project that has been proven to save lives. Set to be deployed across five regional health services, the C5 units will enable ambulance teams to capture, accurately and quickly, all relevant patient data and transmit it the hospital ahead of arrival. The project was coordinated by CSC Scandihealth and Atea, with software developed by Judex, hardware supplied by Lexit and installation carried out by Radiocom. [See Xplore media release] -- Posted Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Getac reports revenue growth
According to Digitimes, Getac Technology Corporation announced consolidated revenues of US$50.4 million for June 2015, up 11.3% on month and 14.8% on year, with revenues for the first half of 2015 reaching US$270 million, up 17.7% on year. The ruggedized PC business is expected to contribute 50% of the company's overall revenues in 2015, up from about 40% in 2014. -- Posted Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Janam introduces XM2-RFID UHF
Janam introduced the XM2-RFID UHF, a compact, rugged keyboard PDA with RFID reader and industrial-grade scanner. Based on Windows Embedded Handheld 6.5, Janam's new handheld RFID reader is designed to fill the need for a light, quick, and affordable device for the rapidly expanding deployment of EPCglobal Class 1 Gen 2, ISO18000-63 RFID data capture applications. [See description, analysis and specs of the Janam XM2-RFID UHF] -- Posted Monday, July 6, 2015

RAM introduces IntelliSkin for Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 tablets
RAM Mounts announced IntelliSkin™ for the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4. IntelliSkin is a protective sleeve for the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 and 10.1 featuring GDS™ Technology to ruggedize and protect Samsung devices for commercial use. IntelliSkin offers drop protection as well as an integrated connector that's molded directly into the skin, preventing damage to the connector from repetitious docking and undocking. For docking, there's the spring-loaded, quick release TAB-TITE cradle as well as the TAB-LOCK cradle with a keyed lock. [See IntelliSkin, TAB-TITE, and TAB-LOCK] -- Posted Friday, July 3, 2015

Article: 'Blue light' segments in transition — rugged computers a game-changer in critical field rescue situations
Handheld Group CEO Jerker Hellström explains how new advanced technological solutions — both hardware and software — are changing the security, public safety, and law enforcement sectors to the very core — and for the better. Advanced mobile applications and rugged mobile computers have greatly improved these professions' ability to perform in time-critical situations and in less than favorable environments. [Read 'Blue light' segments in transition] -- Posted Friday, July 3, 2015

What happened in rugged computing 5 years ago: June 2010
In July 2010, Intermec's Q2 2010 revenues were US$161.2 million with a net loss of US$2.7 million, both a bit better than the year before. Datalogic's Q2 2010 revenues were US$132 million (up 33.3% from Q2 of 2009), with a net profit of US$9.3 million. MobileDemand Tablet PCs were used by the Red Bull Racing NASCAR teams, and the company launched a Public Sector Group. Juniper Systems introduced the Mesa Rugged Notepad. In-Stat predicted that the transition to 4G wireless would be slow, with just 3.6% of WWAN-enabled devices using it by 2014. Tim Bajarin of Creative Strategies wrote about "The Trials and Tribulations of Team Android" but concluded that "they may stay competitive yet." Motion Computing announced that it will resell ritePen 4.0, and Microsoft licensed the ARM architecture. [See July 2010 news archive] -- Posted Thursday, July 2, 2015

Xplore reports record revenue and net income for fiscal 2015
Xplore Technologies reported financials for all of their fiscal 2015 that ended ended March 31, 2015. For the entire fiscal year 2015, Xplore reported record revenues of US$42.6 million, up from US$35.6 million for fiscal 2014. There was net income of US$0.25 million for the full year, compared with a net loss of US$1.76 million in 2014, attributable to increases in revenue and reduction in operating expenses. Note that these results do not include anything from the Motion Computing side, as Xplore only executed that acquisition on April 15. [See Xplore financials release] -- Posted Tuesday, June 30, 2015

The latest from Panasonic's Solutions for Business blog
The frequently updated Panasonic Solutions for Business blog is a constant source of interesting information on using rugged mobile technology in all sorts of deployments, from the commonplace all the way to the extreme. On the former side is a recent entry on the numerous ways RFID can benefit healthcare IT clients (see here). On the latter, an interesting account on how a 5-inch Panasonic Toughpad FZ-X1 handheld tablet was used to establish a working virtual machine in minutes... from the top of Mount Kilimanjaro (see here)! -- Posted Tuesday, June 30, 2015

IoT Evolution Expo — Learning about the Internet of Things
Our friends at FierceMobileIT remind that the IoT Evolution Expo will take place August 17 - 20, 2015, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. The purpose of the event is to meet with IoT ecosystem and worldwide business leaders and learn how to leverage the power of the IoT to transform and move your business forward. [See IoT Evolution Expo] -- Posted Tuesday, June 30, 2015

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TDS Ranger 500X

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    The editor and co-founder of Pen Computing Magazine launched RuggedPCReview.com late 2005 as a website dedicated to providing news and information about rugged mobile computer technology and its applications. The site aims to be an industry clearinghouse for rugged computing equipment hardware reviews as well as an information source on rugged computing terminology, definitions, testing, and enabling technologies.

    "Over the many years that we have been testing and reviewing rugged mobile computers, and in our professional careers prior, we have noticed that there is very little standardization and that potential clients are often confused where and what to buy," said Dr. Conrad H. Blickenstorfer, Editor-in-Chief of RuggedPCReview.com and former CIO of the New York State Dormitory Authority. "We hope that our new service will answer many questions and provide all the answers a client needs to make an informed decision."

    Historic review archive

    iPAQ h6315
    Dell Axim X50v
    Asus A730w
    Itronix GoBook III
    Itronix GoBook VR1
    WalkAbout RT900/XRT
    Getac A770
    Panasonic CF-29
    Casio IT-3000
    iPAQ 1700/3000/4700
    Motorola v710
    Electrovaya SC2000
    HP TC1100
    Fujitsu Stylistic ST5000
    Sharp Actius TN 10W
    Tungsten T3
    Sony UX50
    Dana Wireless
    Tungsten E
    Tapwave Zodiac
    Samsung i500
    Sony CLIE NX80V
    Intermec CT60
    Electrovaya Scribbler
    Xplore iX104
    FIC SlateVision
    HP iPAQ 4000 Series
    HP iPAQ h2215
    Danger HipTop
    Palm Zire 71
    Tungsten C
    Tungsten W
    Sony NZ90
    Kyocera 7135
    HP iPAQ 5450
    HP iPAQ 1900
    Dell Axim X5
    Palm Tungsten T
    AlphaSmart Dana
    ViewSonic V35
    Toshiba e335
    Toshiba e740
    New iPAQs
    Acer C100
    Compaq TC1000
    Fujitsu Stylistic ST4000
    Motion M1200
    Toshiba Portege 3500
    ViewSonic V1100
    T-Mobile PPC
    Sony CLIE SJ20 & SJ30
    Bluetooth vs Treo
    CLIE NR70V
    Treo 270
    Treo 90
    Panasonic 07
    Panasonic 01
    IBM TransNote
    Palm m515
    Palm m130
    Handspring Treo 180
    Palm i705
    Sony T415
    iPAQ 3800 Series
    Toshiba e570
    Casio E-200
    Sony S320 & MYLO
    Sony N610C
    Palm m125
    Visor Neo & Pro
    HP Jornada 568
    Casio IT-700
    Itronix GoBook
    Fujitsu 3500
    Sony Clie 710c
    NEC MobilePro 790
    Kyocera Smartphone
    Casio BE-300
    HandEra 330
    Palm m500 and m505
    HP Jornada 525
    Intermec Model 70
    UR There @migo
    Fujitsu LT C-500
    Handspring Visor Edge
    VisorPhone
    Palm m105
    All Palm devices