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Rugged PC Review Monthly News Archive [ Back to news index]

June 2017

Tech Primer: Electronics potting
Electronics potting — where electronic components are "potted" in suitable enclosures and with suitable compounds that not only protect against shock and vibration, but also against formation of moisture and exposure to corrosive agents — is a simple, cost-effective way to increase the reliability and longevity of electronics components and systems. [Read Electronics potting — A simple, cost-effective way to increase the reliability and longevity of electronics components and systems.] -- Posted Friday, June 30, 2017

Case study: noax industrial PCs survive corrosive seafood processing environment
For over 30 years, Royal Hawaiian Seafood has been a preferred purveyor of seafood to fine dining establishments in the greater San Francisco area. This means managing weighing areas, salt water tanks, advanced refrigeration systems to ensure top quality seafood, processing, packaging and much more. Several years ago, Royal Hawaiian Seafood realized that standard PC technology simply wasn't up to the task. So they tried stainless steel, IP69K rated industrial PCs from noax, and never looked back. [See IPCs Withstand Corrosive Seafood Processing Environments] -- Posted Thursday, June 29, 2017

Janam Recognized with 2017 Manufacturer of the Year Award
Janam Technologies LLC, a leading provider of rugged mobile computers that scan barcodes and communicate wirelessly, announced today that it has been named 2017 Manufacturer of the Year by Varlink. The prestigious award recognizes the strength of the relationship that Janam shares with Varlink. [See Janam press release] -- Posted Thursday, June 29, 2017

Getac introduces powerful, fully rugged, highly configurable Windows tablet with a big, bright 14-inch screen
Sometimes one just needs a big screen on the job, and that's why Getac introduced the A140 14-inch tablet. The super-bright display offers capacitive multi-touch and a hard tip capacitive stylus. Customers have an option of four Intel Skylake Core processors. There's plentiful onboard I/O and the A140 can be configured with integrated scanning, RFID, various security options, as well as custom interfaces. [See Getac media release and RuggedPCReview's description, analysis and specs of the Getac A140] -- Posted Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Panasonic Europe introduces 12-inch "business-rugged" Kaby Lake-powered 2-in-1 hybrid Toughbook XZ6
On and off, Panasonic brings some of its Japanese domestic market Let's Note notebooks to other parts of the world under the Toughbook brand. That's the case with the Toughbook XZ6, an impressive state-of-the-art 12-inch 2-in-1 hybrid. There's 2160 x 1440 resolution, an Intel "Kaby Lake" Core i5-7300U chip, optional active pen, full-scale mechanical keyboard, and exemplary connectivity. The XZ6 doesn't rival a real Toughbook in ruggedness, but it's a lot less expensive than a Toughbook 33 with which it shares many specs. [See RuggedPCReview description, analysis and specs of the Panasonic Toughbook XZ6 -- Posted Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Understanding the future of Juniper-offered operating systems
Gradual shifts in the mobile OS landscape over the past several years has been a growing concern, leaving many enterprise and vertical-market professionals wondering which avenue to take. Identifying the best OS for individual or corporate needs, while looking at its roadmap and plans for the future can be a difficult task. Understanding this issue, Juniper Systems collected information to help customers understand the roadmap of each OS used at company and what they need to know to make the most informed decision. [See Understanding the future of Juniper-offered operating systems] -- Posted Monday, June 26, 2017

MOBIL-INN picks ARBOR IoT-800 to equip Brittany waste management vehicles with iSmartCollect solution
Beautiful French Brittany works hard to preserve its beauty. That includes equipping a growing number of recycling and waste collection vehicles with Mobil-Inn's iSmartCollect solution that simplifies collection management, including seasonal variations, smart control, and circuit modifications, reducing operating costs via real-time maps sharing, human and material resource management, and route modification. On the hardware side, Mobil-Inn chose ARBOR Technology's IoT-800 Android terminal. [See ARBOR media release and RuggedPCReview's report on the ARBOR IoT-800] -- Posted Monday, June 26, 2017

9 Ways to Create and Maintain a Successful Business Partnership
Juniper Systems has one of the best and most active blogs in the rugged mobile computing market. In a new article, Juniper's marketing writer Sarah Keyes describes how building and maintaining business partnerships takes time, patience, and understanding. When maintained correctly, partnerships can act as one of the driving factors of success and revenue. The key is understanding how to keep the relationship healthy and flourishing, while implementing these understandings into day-to-day interactions. [See Juniper Systems' 9 Ways to Create and Maintain a Successful Business Partnership] -- Posted Friday, June 23, 2017

New screen coating makes reading in sunlight a lot easier
Screens on even the newest phones and tablets can be hard to read outside in bright sunlight. Inspired by the nanostructures found on moth eyes, researchers have developed a new antireflection film that could keep people from having to run to the shade to look at their mobile devices. The antireflection film exhibits a surface reflection of just .23 percent, much lower than the iPhone's surface reflection of 4.4 percent, for example. Reflection is the major reason it's difficult to read a phone screen in bright sunlight, as the strong light reflecting off the screen's surface washes out the display. [See press release and full article: "New Screen Coating Makes Reading in Sunlight a Lot Easier. The Secret? Moth Eyes -- Posted Friday, June 23, 2017

MyScript Launches Next-Generation MyScript Developer
MyScript, a pioneering market leader in accurate, high-performance handwriting recognition and digital ink management technology, announces the enhanced MyScript Developer portal. The completely redesigned platform better enables developers to build next-generation applications that leverage digital writing across all popular OS platforms. The enhanced developer program eliminates the cost of entry for developers and reduces application time-to-market. Developers experience no cost to gain access to MyScript’s digital writing technology and to test the applications prior to release. [See MyScript press release] -- Posted Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Xplore to lead $16M+ workforce mobilization project with major telecommunications provider
Xplore Technologies announced that it has received the first orders under a mobile workforce technology refresh agreement that is expected to exceed $16M over the next two years. The Construction & Engineering Group at the long-time Xplore customer, one of the largest telecommunications service providers in the United States, is standardizing on XSLATE B10 Fully Rugged Tablet PCs and accessories as the primary mobile computing platform for thousands of field-based professionals across the U.S. [See Xplore press release] -- Posted Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Apple Watch Series 2 after three weeks
It's been three weeks since I finally gave in and bought a Series 2 Apple Watch. While the Apple Watch isn't a rugged device and thus not something we'd normally report on, it is a wearable device and wearable computing power is playing an increasingly prominent role. That's because unlike even handhelds, a wrist-mount is always there, always handy and it doesn't need to be stowed away. So what's been my experience over the first three weeks with the watch? [Read Apple Watch Series 2 after three weeks] -- Posted Friday, June 16, 2017

Putting Wolverine into Smartphones
Do you buy the ecological hybrid car or the ground crunching Ute? The answer is, says Mary Brittain-White, CEO of Retriever Communications, simply fit for purpose. However, consumer trends and fashion often get in the way and markets are led astray. So was the case with the mass abandonment of ruggedized mobile devices for field workers and the rise of iPhones and iPads for industrial workers. [Read "Putting Wolverine into Smartphones"] -- Posted Thursday, June 15, 2017

Full review: MobileDemand xTablet T1550 rugged Tablet PC
Ruggedness in mobile computers comes at a price, and that can keep customers away. That's why for some time now, MobileDemand has been offering a variety of economically priced rugged tablets. An example is the Intel Cherry Trail-powered 10.1-inch Windows 10-based xTablet T1550. RuggedPCReview examined the T1550, which starts at US$999, in detail and found much to like. Such as solid construction, good connectivity, useful productivity options (including industrial-grade scanning), a good display, and impressive ruggedness. [See full review of the MobileDemand xTablet T1550] -- Posted Thursday, June 15, 2017

Added: Honeywell CN75 rugged handheld computer
There are still many jobs where a conventional legacy rugged handheld works best. And that's one reason why Honeywell gave the venerable Intermec (now part of Honeywell) CN70 handheld an upgrade. It's now the CN75 with more memory, a faster processor, an upgraded scanner and more. The other reason is the availability of Android 6 "Marshmallow" in addition to the legacy Windows Embedded Handheld 6.5. The display remains small but very sharp, and the device can still be ordered with different keypads, including larger versions in the CN70E versions that are about an inch longer. [See description, analysis and specs of the Honeywell CN75] -- Posted Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Fire and EMS departments meet critical mobility needs with DURABOOK R11 rugged tablet
GammaTech Computer Corporation, the North American branch of Twinhead International Corporation, today highlighted recent sales to Fire and EMS departments across the United States. These public safety agencies are turning to the DURABOOK R11 rugged tablet as a cost-effective solution that addresses critical needs for performance, functionality, and reliability. Fire and EMS departments in North Carolina, Oregon, Minnesota, Colorado, Washington, Louisiana, South Carolina, and California recently purchased the DURABOOK rugged tablet. [See GammaTech press release] -- Posted Friday, June 9, 2017

Mitac-Synnex to purchase Westcon-Comstor's Americas business
The Mitac-Synnex Group, of which Getac is a part, announced it will purchase the Americas part of Westcon-Comstor for US$800 million. Westcon-Comstor is a value-added technology distributor of solutions in security, collaboration, networking and data center. The acquisition will bolster Mitac-Synnex's role in the IT security and related markets. [See Westcon-Comstor media release] -- Posted Thursday, June 8, 2017

JLT Mobile computers strengthens organization for future growth
JLT Mobile Computers, a leading developer and manufacturer of reliable computers for demanding environments, continues to strengthen its sales organization with the appointment of Danny Dierckx responsible for Germany, Austria, Switzerland, the U.K. and Benelux; and Anette Malmström as Sales Manager for Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Finland. Christian Funk, previously responsible for the Nordic countries, as well as Germany and the U.K., is from now on focusing on global strategic business development, still maintaining responsibility for strategic customers. Additionally, the development department is expanded to speed up product development and continue to build core expertise. [See JLT Mobile press release] -- Posted Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Getac sees revenue growth
DigiTimes reports that Getac's May 2017 revenues of US$55.4 million were up 6.8% from May 2016. For the first five months of 2017, Getac's revenues were US$284 million, up 13.7% for the same period last year. DigiTimes says rugged systems contribute 45% of all of Getac's revenue, and that Getac has a 18-20% share of the rugged IPC market, about the same as Dell. DigiTimes says Getac's future goal is to expand its market share via software-hardware-integrated solutions. -- Posted Wednesday, June 7, 2017

What happened in rugged computing 5 years ago: June 2012
In June 2012, Motorola Solutions announced the SB1 Smart Badge and the Android-based MC40. We called it "an indication of things to come." Qualcomm announced a Windows Metro app development contest. Black Diamond's Modular Tactical System was selected by the US Air Force. Advantech made its 18.5-inch infotainment terminal available with Android. Microsoft named Motion Country Partner of the Year. Xplore reported record 2012 revenues of US$27.5 million. Microsoft unveiled Windows Phone 8 which was incompatible with the prior Windows 7 Phone. Microsoft also unveiled the first Surface tablets. Motorola Solutions bought Psion for about US$200 million. Intermec restructured, eliminating 7% of its workforce. Rand McNally introduced ruggedized WiFi GPS for truck navigation. -- Posted Wednesday, June 7, 2017

ARBOR releases Apollo Lake-based COM Express Mini module
It's hard to keep track with Intel. Not long ago "Bay Trail" turbo-boosted the formerly anemic Atom processor family into respectability. 22nm Bay Trail was quickly followed by a shrunken 14nm version called "Braswell" with much improved graphics. And that was equally quickly followed by "Apollo Lake" with a new CPU architecture and gen9 graphics (the same architecture as in Skylake). ARBOR Technology is now offering Apollo Lake Celeron and Pentium processors in their new EmNANO-i2402 COM Express Mini Type 10 module that can support up to three HD displays or two 4k displays. [See ARBOR media release]
-- Posted Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Juniper Systems Founder Ron Campbell retires after 24 years of hard work and dedication
Following a long and successful career, Juniper Systems Founder and Chairman Ron Campbell retired from the company on May 31, 2017. With a retirement open house held on May 25 to celebrate his impactful career, his family, friends, coworkers, and colleagues gathered to wish him well and reminisce on the many memory-filled years together. All of us here at wish Mr. Campbell many fulfilled, happy years of retirement, and thank you, sir, for your great work in creating and deploying rugged computing technology in the field. [See Juniper Systems Founder Ron Campbell Retires After 24 Years of Hard Work and Dedication] -- Posted Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Ironclad teams with Sonim to offer ultra-secure, ultra-rugged mobile handset for consumers, enterprise and government
Ironclad Encryption Corporation announced it has engaged with Sonim Technologies to use their ultra-rugged LTE XP7 smartphone as the platform for integrating Ironclad Encryption's ultra-secure algorithms. These efforts will result in the development of ultra-secure, ultra-rugged mobile phones where security, privacy, safety and ruggedness are paramount concerns for users dealing with sensitive, confidential information and who must work under arduous situations and extreme environmental conditions. [See press release] -- Posted Tuesday, June 6, 2017

DT Research unique 2-in-1 Medical Tablet Cart System delivers unmatched flexibility for Mobile Point-of-Care
DT Research, a leading designer and manufacturer of purpose-built computing solutions for vertical markets, announced the DT313-MD, a 13.3" medical tablet system mounted on a slim-line, lightweight cart. The purpose-built system offers maximum computing mobility in a variety of medical environments. Healthcare professionals can efficiently monitor, record and retrieve patient information with the anti-microbial DT313-MD tablet, which includes DT Research's signature hot-swappable battery pack to avoid downtime in time-critical situations. [See DT Research press release and RuggedPCReview's description, analysis and specs of the Medical Tablet Cart System] -- Posted Monday, June 5, 2017

Power and resources of the RS50 Series with a familiar touch of Android operations to help enterprise customers maximize their mobility ROI
CipherLab, a leading innovator in Automatic Identification and Data Capture (AIDC), proudly presents the RS50 Rugged Android Touch Computer to provide productivity that meets high-end market standards with a smartphone user-friendliness. Operating with Android 6.0 certified with GMS, the RS50 series offers advantages in operation speed, power efficiency and data security. Integrating GMS (Google Mobile Service), users can also access applications such as Gmail and Google Map in the field for maximum output. [See Cipherlab press release] -- Posted Thursday, June 1, 2017

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    The editor and co-founder of Pen Computing Magazine launched 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.

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