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TDS Ranger

Ultra-rugged new generation Ranger
(by Conrad H. Blickenstorfer)

Tripod Data Systems Company located in Oregon develops hardware and software for mobile computing applications. Their hardware is built for extreme industrial applications. The latest generation Ranger, which comes in a variety of processor and memory configurations, is an ultra-rugged "flashlight-style" handheld computer built to withstand severe punishment thanks to a carbon fiber case with a steel frame inside and plenty of rubber and polycarbonate outer shell for protection. The Ranger uses a state-of-the-art Intel XScale PXA270 processor, a TFT color display, and up to 512MB of Flash storage. A massive 6,600 mAh Li-Ion battery provides 30 hours of continuous use. The Ranger has a standard Com port and a multiport connector that provides a second Com port, USB, Ethernet, and audio. Optional equipment includes various size CF-caps. The device is sealed to an IP67 rating. In this case, the "7" in the IP rating means the device can survive full 3.3 feet immersion in water for half an hour. There are two versions available: the Ranger 300X uses a 32MHz processor, has 64MB or RAM and 256MB of Flash, and Bluetooth and WiFi are optional. The Ranger 500X uses a faster 520MHz versioin of the PXA270 chip, has 128MB of RAM and 512MB Flash. It comes with Bluetooth, and WiFi is optional.

Note: Tripod Data System is to be commended for clearly explaining the various hardware testing procedures on its website. [see hardware test standards]

In February of 2006, TDS replaced Windows Mobile 2003 with Windows Mobile 5.0 in the Ranger. 5.0 supports additional features such as persistent storage that eliminates the need for a RAM-based file system or Sprite Backup. Windows Mobile 5.0 also unlocks the USB host functionality of the Ranger's standard USB port.

Form-factor Rugged flashlight-style handheld
CPU Speed 312 or 520 MHz Intel PXA270
OS Windows Mobile 5.0
RAM/ROM 64/256MB and 128/512MB
Card slots 1 Type I and 1 Type II CF, 1 SD
Display type Color TFT with LED backlight
Display size/res 240 x 320
Digitizer/pens touch/1
Keyboard/keys 53-key
Navigation keyboard/stylus
Housing polycarbonate shell
Operating Temp -22 to 140F
Sealing IP67
Shock 4 foot drop
Size (WxHxD) 5.2 x 10.5 x 1.9
Weight 2.1 pounds
Power 6,600mAH Li-Ion ("up to 30 hrs.")
Interface USB, Serial
Wireless Bluetooth (X500), 802.11b (optional)
List price Inquire
Contact www.tdsway.com
Windows CE/Windows Mobile Info
  • Windows Embedded Handheld
  • Windows Phone 7
  • Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R3
  • Windows Mobile 6.5
  • Windows Mobile 6
  • Windows CE 6.0
  • Windows Mobile 5
  • Windows CE 5.0
  • Windows Mobile Smartphone
  • Windows Mobile 2003
  • Windows CE .Net
  • Windows for Pocket PC 2002
  • Pocket PC intro 2000
  • Windows CE H/PC Pro 1998
  • Windows CE 2.0 1997
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