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

September 2014

DAP Technologies introduces small, rugged, powerful V1000 VERSO vehicle-mount computer
DAP Technologies announced the V1000 VERSA, a compact, versatile GPS- and wireless-enabled 10-inch, IP65-sealed fixed-mounted computer for demanding applications. Available with either an Atom D2550 or an Intel "Haswell" Core i5 processor, the sunlight-viewable panel can be used in the harshest environment, yet is powerful enough even for HD video streaming, GEO calculations and real-time data manipulation. [See DAP VERSO page and RuggedPCReview's description analysis and specs of the DAP Technologies V1000 VERSO] -- Posted Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Juniper Systems and Effigis provide easy, inexpensive sub-meter GPS accuracy
Juniper Systems and Effigis, a Montreal-based geomatics solutions provider, have partnered to provide a powerful, yet inexpensive solution to easily capture and post-process GPS data to attain sub-meter accuracy. Effigis’ OnPOZ Precision Positioning Software suite takes advantage of the superior GNSS performance Juniper Systems’ Archer 2 rugged handheld provides to collect high-accuracy GPS data. [See Juniper press release and OnPOZ product sheet] -- Posted Tuesday, September 30, 2014

2014 Design-Build Conference & Expo
Motion Computing alerts to the 2014 Design-Build Conference & Expo, October 6-8, 2014, in Dallas, TX. The Design-Build Conference & Expo is the largest national gathering of the year for the design-build market and the only event centered exclusively on design-build. For two decades, design-build practitioners, specialty contractors, and public and private owners have gathered annually for the Conference & Expo. Continuing to grow each year, the Design-Build Conference & Expo features nearly 2,000 attendees and exhibitors from across all design and construction sectors. [>> read more..] -- Posted Monday, September 29, 2014

How the GoPro phenomenon came about, and why it matters
On September 29, 2014, GoPro announced the GoPro Hero 4 and also a new basic GoPro camera. This is relevant for anyone dealing with ruggedized computing gear and using technology in the field for a number of reasons. But first, what exactly is GoPro and why do their products matter? [>> read more...] -- Posted Monday, September 29, 2014

GoPro announces new Hero action cameras
GoPro announced three new cameras, those being the top-of-the-line Hero 4 Black (US$499), the Hero 4 Silver (US$399), and a new basic camera, just called Hero (US$129). Most important features: the Hero 4 Black can do 4k/30fps, 2.7k/50fps and 1080p/120. The Hero 4 Silver seems to have roughly the same capabilities as the old Hero 3 Black but includes, a first for GoPros, an integrated LCD. The new entry-level Hero can do 1080p/30fps and 720p/60fps and is built directly into a waterproof housing. [See GoPro press release] -- Posted Monday, September 29, 2014

Streamlining transportation and logistics – warehouse to store
From the warehouse to the store, transportation and logistics are complex ecosystems that rely on fast, reliable and secure communications. The right system will automate every step of the process from inventory management to order fulfillment and asset tracking, creating a connected and cohesive structure. [>> read more] -- Posted Friday, September 26, 2014

Getac fastest growing partner in HP's 3rd party solution program
Getac announced it is celebrating its success as the fastest growing solutions provider in Hewlett-Packard’s Third Party solution program. Through the program, enterprise and industry-specific organizations can purchase Getac-branded rugged notebooks, convertibles, tablets, handhelds and in-vehicle solutions through HP’s direct sales teams and channel partners. The expanding need and demand for rugged computer solutions has made Getac the fastest growing partner in the program since it joined in 2009 and saw a 43% increase in sales in the last year alone. [See press release and Getac products at HP] -- Posted Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Upcoming free webinar by Juniper Systems: Achieving sub-meter GPS accuracy on a budget
Juniper Systems invites you to an upcoming webinar: Achieving Sub-Meter GPS Accuracy on a Budget. In the webinar, their GIS experts will demonstrate how easy it is to a) collect field data using EZTag CE, an inexpensive GIS-mapping software packed with functionality, b) achieve sub-meter accuracy on collected data with a simple post-processing software called EZSurv, and c) import & export existing data from your GIS, including custom attributes. The webinar will take place September 25, 2014, 11AM to 12noon MDT. [Free registration here] -- Posted Tuesday, September 23, 2014

F4 Tech announces easy-to-use mobile forest inventory solution
F4 Tech, which makes the Flint and Forge Echo lines of rugged mobile computers, announced the release of its newest software offering, SilvAssist Mobile software. The app presents foresters a simple work flow solution for field data collection and which the company feels is the easiest to use mobile Forest inventory solution on the market today. [See F4 Tech press release] -- Posted Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Rugged devices aid data collection in oil fields
Great article by tech writer Brian T. Horowitz on Tech Page One on the use of ruggedized mobile laptops in oil fields, and how they can help data collection and in many other capacities. [See Rugged devices aid data collection in oil fields -- Posted Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Handheld launches the ultra-rugged capacitive touch 4.7-inch Nautiz X8 with Windows Embedded Handheld or Android 4.2.2
Handheld Group announced the launch of its Nautiz X8 rugged mobile computer, which features a large, bright 4.7-inch capacitive multi-touch display, IP67 sealing, a very wide operating temperature range, 12 hour battery life, and an extension cap expansion system. The Nautiz X8 is available both in Windows Embedded Handheld and Android 4.2.2 versions. [See press release and RuggedPCReview's description, analysis and specs of the Handheld Nautiz X8] -- Posted Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Full review: GammaTech Durabook R8300
RuggedPCReview conducted a full review of the GammaTech Durabook R8300, the first fully rugged notebook computer sold under the Durabook brand. The R8300 is also a direct replacement for earlier General Dynamics Itronix GD8000 and GD8200 rugged notebooks, Twinhead/GammaTech having been the OEM for those machines. The R8300 includes a variety of technology, performance and ruggedness updates that freshen up the platform while retaining complete backward compatibility with prior model infrastructures, programming and peripherals. [See full review of the GammaTech Durabook R8300] -- Posted Monday, September 22, 2014

The unpredictable nature of screen sizes
It's a mad, mad, mad world as far as the screen size of mobile devices goes. To witness, for smartphones, 4.7 inches or so now seems the least customers will accept, and 5.5 inches or larger is better. When Apple introduced its iPhone 6 (4.7 inch) and iPhone 6+ (5.5 inch), the demand was such that both Apple's and AT&T's websites couldn't keep up. Dial back a couple of decades to the dawn of handhelds. The first Apple Newtons and Tandy/Casio Zoomers and such all had displays...[read more] -- Posted Sunday, September 21, 2014

GammaTech releases rugged 11.6-inch Haswell-powered Durabook R11 Windows tablet
GammaTech introduced the thin and light, yet still fully rugged, Durabook R11 tablet, an elegant 11.6-inch capacitive multi-touch design geared towards field deployment in in any sector and environment. Powered by Intel Haswell i5 and i7 processors, the Durabook R11 offers 1366 x 768 resolution, an optional digitizer pen, USB 3.0, and a wealth of options including 4G LTE, NFC/RFID, MSR reader and 1D/2D scanner. [See description, analysis and specs of the GammaTech Durabook R11] -- Posted Thursday, September 18, 2014

Janam introduces rugged 5.9-inch Android tablet for enterprise and mobile workforce applications
Janam announced the launch of their Android-based rugged XT1, perhaps the handiest and lightest of currently available rugged tablet offerings. Powered by a 1.5GHz OMAP4470 processor, the XT1 has a 5.9-inch capacitive multi-touch screen and weighs just 13 ounces. The XT1 blends advanced consumer phone technology with enterprise-relevant key features such as ruggedness, sealing, industrial-grade barcode scanning and rapid battery recharging. [See Janam press release and RuggedPCReview's description, analysis and specs of the Janam XT1] -- Posted Thursday, September 18, 2014

Handheld Nautiz X4 rugged mobile computer now with Android
Handheld Group announced that its Nautiz X4 rugged mobile computer, launched earlier this year, is now available with Android as well. "The Nautiz X4 has become the obvious choice for mobile workers in a wide range of industries thanks to its ultimate mobility with true field functionality in a handy package and at a very attractive price," said Johan Hed, Product Manager Handheld Group. "To offer our customers a wider choice, we now introduce the option to get a Nautiz X4 with either Android 4.2 or Windows Embedded Handheld 6.5." [See Handheld press release] -- Posted Wednesday, September 17, 2014

DigiTimes: New Android tablets compete on value-added features, not just price alone
DigiTimes reports that an overview of the IFA 2014 show in Berlin showed that Android tablet vendors are moving from low price wars on to offering value-added in the form of 3D cameras, rugged features, higher resolution touch panels, faster communication, etc. They also report that, likely in response to ever-larger smartphones, new tablets now usually have 8 instead of 7-inch screens, and that the price of small Windows tablets has fallen about US$100 this year alone. -- Posted Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Mountain Leverage Named a Vocollect 'TSP Premier' Partner by Honeywell
Mountain Leverage, a U.S.-based total solutions provider for supply chain logistics, announced that it has achieved Vocollect PartnerNet Total Solutions Provider (TSP) Premier partner level with Honeywell. Honeywell’s Vocollect voice-enabled workflow performance solutions have nearly a million voice-enabled workers worldwide. -- Posted Tuesday, September 16, 2014

RuggedPCReview blog: The unpredictable nature of screen sizes
It's a mad, mad, mad world as far as the screen size of mobile devices goes. To witness, for smartphones, 4.7 inches or so now seems the least customers will accept, and 5.5 inches or larger is better. When Apple introduced its iPhone 6 (4.7 inch) and iPhone 6+ (5.5 inch), the demand was such that both Apple's and AT&T's websites couldn't keep up. [read more] -- Posted Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Arbor officially releases Gladius 5 in the US
ARBOR Technology officially introduced its Gladius 5 rugged IoT handheld in the US. Designed for various applications in mobile POS, field service and public safety, the Gladius 5 is equipped with an MT 6589 Quad-core Cortex-A7 CPU and running Android 4.2. The IP65-sealed device has a 5.5-inch 1280 x 720 procap multi-touch screen with Gorilla Glass, RFID/NFC, dual SIM card slots, 5 sensors, 1D/2D barcode scanning and WLAN/WWAN/BT wireless. [See description, analysis and specs of the ARBOR Gladius 5] -- Posted Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Datalogic's Skorpio X3 rugged mobile computer chosen by major French supermarket chain
Datalogic announced that Zero Gachis has chosen the Skorpio X3 mobile computer as an integral component of their smart labeling solution in French supermarkets. This solution is designed to efficiently identify products with short expiration dates nearing the end of their shelf life, and accurately re-label with current marked down pricing. [See press release] -- Posted Tuesday, September 16, 2014

MobileDemand: NASCAR team replaces laptop and handheld with rugged Windows tablet
MobileDemand reports in its blog that one of the top teams in NASCAR with drivers in both Sprint Cup and Nationwide, realized that their two-device laptop and scanner combination wasn't as efficient and immune to abuse as they'd like and now use rugged Windows tablets with integrated barcode scanners, while still being able to communicate directly with their SQL database and Microsoft Office. [See MobileDemand blog] -- Posted Monday, September 15, 2014

Socket Mobile releases updated SDK with Apple iOS 8 support
Socket Mobile released the latest version of their Cordless Hand Scanner (CHS) Software Developer Kit, SocketScan SDK version 10.1. The latest version includes many new feature’s and benefits and is also compatible with Apple’s latest iOS 8 operating system. The new SDK provides support for Socket Mobile’s model 8Qi 2D barcode scanner announced earlier this quarter. The 8Qi is the smallest and lightest 2D barcode scanner available in the market today. [See press release and Socket Mobile Developer Program Registration] -- Posted Friday, September 12, 2014

Handheld’s Nautiz X4 data collector now certified by Verizon Wireless
Handheld Group announced that Verizon Wireless has granted carrier certification for its Nautiz X4 rugged handheld computer. The Nautiz X4 is a rugged, fully portable handheld device designed to offer efficient data collection and communication capabilities for fieldworkers. The Verizon-ready Nautiz X4 is available now for $1,399 MSRP (1D scanner) or $1,549 MSRP (2D imager). [See press release and our review of the Handheld Nautiz X4] -- Posted Friday, September 12, 2014

RAM Mounts features rugged mounting solutions for DAP Technologies tablets and panels
RAM Mounts is featuring their ultra-rugged mobile computer solutions for securing DAP Technologies tablets and panels to virtually any warehouse vehicle including sit down, standing and extended reach forklifts, pallet jacks and much more. The unique ability of RAM to absorb damaging shock and vibration plus its fully adjustable positioning features can't be matched by any other mounting method. [See RAM Mounts for DAP Technologies mobile computers] -- Posted Thursday, September 11, 2014

ViA launches inexpensive, rugged, ultra-reliable fanless ViA ARTiGO A1400 dual-display signage system
VIA Technologies announced the VIA ARTiGO A1300, a rugged ultra-compact fanless quad-core E-Series-based system with a VIA VX11PH Media processor, rich connectivity and networking features designed for a wide range of dual-display signage, kiosk, menu board, HMI, and other IoT applications. Capable of playing two 1080p videos or four 720p videos at the same time, its two HDMI ports can operate independently, enabling multimedia content to be displayed at different resolutions, pixel depths, and refresh rates. [See VIA ARTiGO A1300 page] -- Posted Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Apple introduces new iPhones, Apple Pay, and Apple Watch
Apple introduced the iPhone 6 with a 1334 x 750 pixel 4.7-inch screen and the iPhone 6+ with a 1920 x 1080 pixel 5.5-inch screen. Powered by a new A8 chip and M8 co-processor and running iOS 8, the new 802.11ac and NFC-equipped iPhones, which can be pre-ordered on Sept. 12 and ship on Sept. 19, have powerful new cameras with optical image stabilization, will come in 16GB, 64GB and 128GB versions, and start at US$199 (4.7") and US$299 (5.5") with 2-year contract. Apple also announced Apple Pay for secure payments via finger touch and NFC. And Apple announced the US$349 Apple Watch, available early 2015, which has a novel crown and sensor driven user interface and works in conjunction with iPhone 5 and 6. Judging by Apple stock movement, Wall Street seemed excited over the new iPhones, very excited over Apple Pay, but not excited over the watch. -- Posted Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Xplore RangerX Pro fully-rugged tablets deployed for network construction technicians
Xplore Technologies announced that they have received an additional order for approximately 1,500 RangerX Pro fully-rugged Android tablets that will be used by a major U.S. telecommunications provider’s field technicians in its construction division. “We believe that the RangerX Pro fully-rugged Android tablet is the best Android solution in the market today. It is the perfect solution for our customers’ technicians in the field” said Mark Holleran, president and chief operating officer for Xplore Technologies. “This order is a follow on order from an existing telecommunication’s customer and we are pleased to see this key relationship expanding.” -- Posted Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Dell unveils the Latitude 14 Rugged
Dell has complemented its line of "Rugged Extreme" notebooks with the new Latitude 14 Rugged. Available with Intel "Haswell" i3, i5, or i7 processors, Dell's new tough laptop has a 1366 x 768 pixel 14-inch display, optional discrete nVidia graphics, exceptional onboard I/O, and a vast array of configuration options. Do note, though, that despite the new model's name, this is Dell's semi-rugged entry (and successor to the E6430 ATG) in the 14-inch class, which means IP52 sealing, 3-foot drop spec to provide "protection from dust, water and the elements." It is essentially a built-down version of Dell's 14 Rugged Extreme, and is compatible with all of the rugged line's docks and peripherals. [See description, analysis and specs of the Dell Latitude 14 Rugged] -- Posted Monday, September 8, 2014

Winmate releases next-gen industrial Android PDA, now with replaceable, more powerful battery
Winmate's rugged 4.3-inch E430 Android handheld platform has been quite the success. The company is following up with a 3rd generation, the E430RM2 that now has a replaceable battery with larger capacity, easier access to expansion card slots, and productivity-enhancing new accessories. [See description, analysis and specs of the Winmate E430RM2] -- Posted Monday, September 8, 2014

Motorola Solutions and ET1 Android tablets help sports bar chain increase average table revenue
Motorola Solutions reports how a Quebec-based restaurant chain was searching for a way to increase table income and improve customer satisfaction and is now using Motorola Solutions technology to reduce waiting time for ordering and receiving food and drinks. That includes Motorola’s ET1 Android tablet for mobile order-taking. [See Motorola Solutions press release and case study video.] -- Posted Monday, September 8, 2014

Samsung Galaxy Tab Active
Samsung announced the Galaxy Tab Active, which the company calls their "first tablet built specifically for business," designed with input from vertical market customers. It's basically a toughened-up version of the 8-inch Samsung Galaxy Tab 4, one that sports impressive IP67 sealing and a 4-foot drop spec. But what can customers interested in a more rugged consumer tablet really expect from it? [See description, analysis and specs of the Samsung Galaxy Tab Active] -- Posted Sunday, September 7, 2014

German Forest Service uses Juniper Systems' Mesa Rugged Notepad to manage sustainable forests
Junipr Systems announced that one of Europe's most influential forest services, the Hessen-Forst Enterprise in Hessen, Germany, recently purchased 580 of Juniper Systems' Mesa Geo Rugged Notepads to manage the nearly 1.7 million acres of forests in Hessen. Hessen forests are unique in that they are managed in a way that makes them completely sustainable. Trevor Brown, Natural Resources Market Manager at Juniper Systems, said, "With the level of detail with which they manage their forests, it is essential that they have a high-quality data collection tool that is easy to use and has reliable GPS performance under heavy tree canopy. The Mesa Geo fills that need perfectly for them.” [See Juniper Systems press release and Data Management Keeping German Forests Sustainable blog entry]
-- Posted Friday, September 5, 2014

The growing sales of "phablets"
According to a new forecast from IDC, worldwide phablet shipments (smartphones with screen sizes from 5.5- to less than 7-inch) will reach 175 million units worldwide in 2014, passing the 170 million portable PCs expected to ship during the same period. In 2015, total phablet volumes will top 318 million units, surpassing the 233 million tablets forecast to ship in 2015. -- Posted Thursday, September 4, 2014

Florida county uses Getac F110 rugged tablets for fire rescue squad
WEAR TV reports that Escambia County (Florida) Commissioners have approved the purchase of 60 new mobile electronic devices for Escambia County Fire Rescue. The Getac F110 tablet, will be installed in the passenger side of all Escambia County Fire Rescue fire trucks. [See WEAR TV report] -- Posted Thursday, September 4, 2014

Added: ARBOR Gladius G1056
With their rugged Gladius G1056, ARBOR Technology took Intel's Mobile Clinical Assistant concept design with its integrated handle and optimized it for use in the field. That includes extra protection, four USB ports, RS232 serial, LAN, VGA and even DisplayPort. The Gladius G1056 is powered by a dual-core AMD G-Series APU, has a large 10.4-inch AFFS+ resistive touch screen plus active pen, and can be equipped with dual 5mp cameras, RFID, and 3.75G WWAN. [See description, analysis and specs of the ARBOR Gladius G1056] -- Posted Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Xplore gets follow-up order from military
Xplore Technologies announced that it received a million dollar plus purchase order as part of an ongoing military program. "This order is the latest in a series of purchase orders from this U.S. military program involving the delivery of several thousand devices," stated Mark Holleran, Xplore’s President and Chief Operating Officer. [See Xplore press release] -- Posted Wednesday, September 3, 2014

RuggedPCReview welcomes ARBOR Technology Corp. as its newest industry sponsor
ARBOR Technology has joined the RuggedPCReview industry sponsor family, thus helping us spread the word of the uses and benefits of ruggedized computing equipment, and generating the detailed product reviews our organization is known for. ARBOR Technology, founded in 1993, is a Taiwan-based designer and manufacturer of embedded and rugged computing products and services. The company has a worldwide sales and support network with offices located in China, the US, France, Italy, Germany, the UK, Australia, South Korea, Singapore and Malaysia. -- Posted Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Brenham, Texas, battles heat, crime, mobility challenges with Motion Computing rugged tablets and RAM mounting solutions
Motion Computing announced that The City of Brenham has achieved a 30% cost savings by replacing its old mobile communications and data technology throughout its police and fire vehicles with Motion’s Windows-based rugged tablets and RAM mounts. Among the elite 5% of Texas law enforcement agencies long recognized by the Texas Police Chiefs Association Foundation for its Best Practices in operational standards, this Texas municipality acknowledged the need to modernize its mobile workforce capabilities when officers started complaining about the bulkiness and poor performance of its previous in-vehicle equipment. [See Motion news release and video case study] -- Posted Tuesday, September 2, 2014

What happend in rugged computing 5 years ago: September 2009
In September 2009, Itronix introduced Gobi 3G into its rugged notebooks and tablets. We reviewed the Dell Latitude XT2 convertible with multi-touch. RAM introduced the RAM Tough-Hub. Motion Computing began using the superior Hydis AFFS+ display in its improved rugged F5 tablet. The Nikon-Trimble joint venture introduced the Windows CE-based Nivo "Total Station." Psion offered cash for "Data Collection Clunkers." DAP Technologies began using Windows Embedded instead of just Windows CE in its rugged tablets. There were rumors that Fedex would deploy 100,000 Motorola MC9500 rugged handhelds. Getac added the PS236 GPS handheld. Wyse launched "Project Borg" and Fujitsu added multi-touch to its Lifebook T5010. VDC announced that Motorola had 40% of the total market for rugged handhelds, Intermec less than 20%, and Psion Teklogix and LXE each less than 10%. [See September 2009 archive] -- Posted Tuesday, September 2, 2014

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