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

September 2015

Honeywell introduces tough, state-of-the-art mobile handheld for the field, available with Windows or Android
Honeywell introduced the Dolphin CT50 as a modern, versatile and very tough mobile computer to help streamline operations and maximize worker efficiencies out there in the field. Powered by a 2.26GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon chip, the CT50 has a bright 4.7-inch 1280 x 720 pixel capacitive multi-touch display, extensive onboard communication and data collection capabilities, as well as the sealing and toughness required to survive on the job. See description, analysis and specs of the Honeywell Dolphin CT50] -- Posted Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Apple quietly adds a degree of water sealing to latest iPhones
Without drawing any attention to it, Apple has apparently made their new iPhone 6s and 6s Plus a little more rugged and considerably better sealed and protected. The folks at fixit.org opened up the iPhone 6s and found a newly widened lip around the perimeter upon which sits a gasket. It's not exactly an advanced tongue-and-groove pressure seal like we see on rugged devices, but far better than nothing at all. ifixit also found that every cable connector is now protected by its own silicone seal. A YouTube video by Zach Straley shows the 6s and 6s Plus sitting in shallow bowls of water for an hour, and still working just fine afterwards. [See fixit.org analysis and YouTube water test] -- Posted Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Las Vegas Metro PD takes delivery on Getac rugged tablets for use in cruisers and motor units
Getac announced that the Las Vegas (NV) Metro PD has ordered 898 Getac rugged tablets for its police force. The department ordered 778 Getac F110 rugged tablets to be installed in its cruisers. Another 120 Getac T800 rugged tablets will be deployed by the department’s Motor Division to support traffic control and citations. Las Vegas Metro PD selected the Getac F110 fully rugged tablet for its characteristics that include a sunlight-readable11.6-inch display, powerful processor, dual hot-swappable battery for extended field use, dedicated GPS and WWAN modules, and tri-pass-through antenna ports for simultaneous GPS, WWAN and WLAN connections via roof-mounted antennas. -- Posted Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Winmate Communication's rugged M101B tablet series earns Verizon Wireless certification
Winmate announced that Verizon Wireless has granted carrier certification for its M101B, a 10.1-inch, rugged, enterprise-ready Windows tablet. The M101B, built for advanced computing in rugged environments with its hot-swappable battery, offers robust data capture features that include 1D/2D barcode scanners with DPM (direct part marking) technology, UHF/HF-RFID readers, and front and rear cameras. Equipped with Intel quad-core Bay Trail processors and Windows Embedded 8.1 (upgradeable to Windows 10 IoT Enterprise) this rugged, mobile tablet is designed to take the place of cumbersome laptop and desktop computers, increasing efficiencies and streamlining communications whether in the field, on the manufacturing line, or on a remote oil rig. [See Winmate M101B product page] -- Posted Thursday, September 24, 2015

Panasonic Toughpad tablets deliver for Herts NHS Trust drivers
Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust has put the latest Panasonic Toughpad FZ-E1 tablet (see our analysis) at the heart of its driver operations by equiping each vehicle driver with a device. The Trust's fleet of 50 vehicles cover one million miles a year including transporting patients and delivering samples, medical records and equipment between hospitals. The Panasonic FZ-E1 tablet provides their schedule of pick-ups and deliveries, plans the route using GIS mapping applications and can be used to scan packages for Proof of Collection and Delivery. [See media release] -- Posted Wednesday, September 23, 2015

MobileDemand white paper on the benefits of rugged tablet PCs
MobileDemand released a very informative 8-page white paper entitled "The Benefits of Standardizing on Rugged Tablet PCs." The paper addresses the role of mobile computing in the enterprise today, the importance of selection criteria, as well as the total cost of ownership of rugged tablets versus consumer level products. Highly recommended reading. [See "The Benefits of Standardizing on Rugged Tablet PCs."] -- Posted Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Handheld Group announces strategic enterprise mobility management alliance with SOTI
Handheld Group and SOTI, a major provider of Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM), announced a strategic alliance extending SOTI MobiControl’s deep management capabilities to Handheld’s rugged mobile devices. Certification of Handheld’s devices within the SOTI OEM partner program enables Handheld’s reselling partners to offer SOTI’s technology to quickly provision devices, content and applications without end user intervention or downtime. Handheld chose SOTI based on the company’s vertical expertise and device control. [See Handheld Group media release] -- Posted Wednesday, September 23, 2015

JLT's new Rugged PCT capacitive touch technology
JLT Mobile Computer's Christian Funk explains how upgrading from resistive touch screen technology to capacitive can bring a whole host of benefits to industrial computers, but only if the screens can be ruggedized. He describes their solution, Rugged PCT, which combines extremely durable, reliable, rugged technology with water resistant properties, interference-proof design and compatibility with gloved use. [Read Ruggedizing Capacitive Touch for Industrial Computing]
-- Posted Wednesday, September 23, 2015

JLT Mobile Computers introduces Intel Bay Trail-powered rugged logistics panel computer with capacitive multi-touch
JLT Mobile Computers announced the 12-inch JLT1214P, a new logistics computer which features revolutionary Rugged Projective Capacitive Touch (PCT) display technology and, thanks to an Intel "Bay Trail" E3845 quad-core processor, additional computing power compared to previous product generations. [See description, analysis and specs of the JLT Mobile Computers JLT1214P -- Posted Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Top three ways to mount a rugged tablet PC in a forklift
If you are currently exploring the option of deploying forklift-mounted tablets, you may be wondering how exactly you should mount the devices. What will it look like? What is the best placement so it's not in the way of the operator? A new blog post on MobileDemand's Ruggedized Computing Blog gives a high level overview of the top three ways enterprises are mounting their devices. [See Top three ways to mount a tablet in a forklift] -- Posted Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Juniper demos new SnowGage system in free webinar
Juniper Systems is holding a free webinar on September 24th, where they will demonstrate how to use their new SnowGage system to easily collect real-time snow depth data and improve ski resort operations. Juniper Systems’ SnowGage system works by transmitting real-time snow depth data directly from the sensor to the snow groomer operator, as well as to operations managers in the office, allowing for faster and more informed decision making. [Sign up for free webinar] -- Posted Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Camera module market to reach US$62 billion within 5 years
Grand View Research projects the market for camera modules to reach US$62 billion by 2022. Technological proliferation and the increasing demand for smartphones and tablet PC devices are expected to drive growth over the forecast period. Camera modules find extensive applications in medical and healthcare segments, smartphone & tablet PC devices, automotive industry, defense & aerospace, industrial & security applications, and consumer electronics. [See Grand View Research Media release] -- Posted Tuesday, September 22, 2015

ARBOR unveils Mini-ITX industrial motherboard with 6th generation Intel Xeon E3 v5 processors
ARBOR Technology announced the ITX-i89H0, a Mini-ITX industrial motherboard (170 x 170 mm form factor) based on Intel's 6th generation 25-watt "Skylake-H" 2.0 GHz quad-core Xeon E3 v5 embedded server processor with 2.8GHz max turbo frequency and integrated HD Graphics P530. ARBOR targets the ITX-i89H0 at intelligent platforms in gaming, infotainment, security, automation, digital signage, etc. [See ARBOR media release] -- Posted Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Zebra introduces ET50/55 enterprise tablets in two sizes and with Windows or Android
Zebra introduced their next-generation ET50 and ET55 enterprise tablet computers. With these two new products, available available with a 8.3-inch or 10.1-inch display size and with either Windows 8.1 or Android 5.1, Zebra seeks to combine the best of consumer-styling with the kind of enterprise-class features required to increase workforce productivity. [See description, analysis and specs of the Zebra ET50/55] -- Posted Saturday, September 19, 2015

What led to the Universal Stylus Initiative?
Capacitive multi-touch has taken the world by storm, but the technology is more suited for consumption than creation. For that, having an active pen is desirable for many reasons, but active pen technology is proprietary, adding to costs and limiting markets. The Universal Stylus Initiative seeks to change that. Here are our thoughts. [Read What led to the Universal Stylus Initiative] -- Posted Friday, September 18, 2015

TAG rugged military PPS GPS-S shown at ION GNSS+ 2015
Technology Advancement Group, which manufactures highly specialized rugged computer systems designed to survive harsh military environments, demonstrated their Precise Positioning Service (PPS) Global Positioning System Survey (GPS-S) specially designed for the Army Geospatial Center (AGC) of the United States Army Corps of Engineers at ION GNSS+ 2015, the world’s largest technical meeting and showcase of GNSS technologies, products, and services. [See TAG media release and PPS GPS-S page] -- Posted Friday, September 18, 2015

ARBOR introduces HTab All-in-one bedside infotainment solution for healthcare services
Ever notice how most hospital rooms still have ancient wall-mounted TVs, and nurses look up information on wallboards that anyone could erase or write on? ARBOR Technology announced a better approach in the form of the ARBOR HTab, a bedside turn-key solution combining healthcare and patient entertainment services. The IP65-sealed, POE-powered Android-based HTab has a 10.1-inch 1280 x 800 pixel multi-touch display. It combines entertainment, communication and self-service (educational materials, room automation, meal ordering and billing) with a powerful Content Management System as well as primary healthcare applications, such as electronic health records, medical prescribing and image archiving. The latter are available to staff via RFID/NFC reader. [See ARBOR release on HTab]
-- Posted Friday, September 18, 2015

Review: Advantech MICA-071 medical "Pocket Pad"
The healthcare industry remains a massive opportunity for purveyors of ruggedized mobile computing technology, but it takes the exact right type of gear. RuggedPCReview examined Advantech's 7-inch easy-to-clean MICA-071 "Pocket Pad" tablet that includes an industrial-grade 1D/2D scanner, is powered by a quick Intel "Bay Trail" Z3770 processor, and has a terrific 1280 x 800 pixel capacitive touch display. [See full review of the Advantech MICA-071 medical tablet] -- Posted Wednesday, September 16, 2015

VDC Research on The Global Market for Enterprise Tablets
VDC Research reports that after several high-flying years of strong growth, the tablet market crashed back to earth in late 2014 and early 2015 amid growing competition from popular large smartphones (phablets), a slower than expected replacement/upgrade cycle among existing end users, and challenging primary use case positioning of tablets relative to PCs and smartphones. As a result, the market will experience its first contraction in 2015. VDC Research addresses this issue and more in The Global Market for Enterprise Tablets. -- Posted Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Systel launches rugged High Performance Computing server product line in partnership with NVIDIA
Systel announced the launch of a rugged High Performance Computing (HPC) rack mount server product line. Powered by the latest NVIDIA Tesla and GRID GPU cards, Systel's rugged HPC servers offer tremendous power and high performance. Systel's HPC solutions are designed and optimized for deployment in Defense and Oil and Gas mission-critical applications in the harshest environments. [See Systel HPC page] -- Posted Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Xplore launches powerful XSlate B10 rugged tablet
Xplore Technologies launched the XSlate B10 rugged tablet, an evolved and significantly more powerful version of its Bobcat tablet. The Intel "Broadwell" Core i5-based XSlate B10 weighs just 2.5 pounds, carries C1D2 and ATEX certification, has comprehensive onboard connectivity (including native serial and optional HDMI in), has glove and wet modes, a Wacom pen, and offers up to 20 hours of battery life. RuggedPCReview performed detailed testing of the new XSlate B10, including extreme temperature benchmarks. [See full review of the Xplore XSlate B10] -- Posted Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Review: MobileDemand xTablet T1600
Designed for on-the-go professionals, MobileDemand's xTablet T1600 is modern, sleek and elegant, but it's also rugged enough for serious outdoor work. RuggedPCReview performed a full test of the 11.6-inch xTablet T1600 with its frugal but powerful Intel "Haswell" Core i5-4200U processor and found it a state-of-the-art tablet that won't weigh you down, and won't break out there in the field, even under extreme conditions. [See full review of the MobileDemand xTablet T1600] -- Posted Friday, September 11, 2015

Janam adds extended-range scanning rugged handheld
Janam announced an additional version of the XG3. The XG3-ER version includes the Intermec EX25 near/far imager with auto-focus that offers a 6-inches to more than 50 feet barcode reading range that is 30% greater than competitive scanners. The XG3-ER provides accurate, motion-tolerant scanning when lighting conditions are dim or the barcodes are damaged, obscured or placed on high shelving. [See Janam media release] -- Posted Thursday, September 10, 2015

Apple introduces 12.9-inch super-high definition iPad Pro with active "Apple Pencil"
Apple introduced new iPhones (the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus), a new iPad mini (the mini 4), a new Apple TV, and, perhaps most importantly, a larger iPad geared towards business and enterprise use. Featuring a 12.9-inch display with 4:3 aspect ratio and "retina" level 2,732 x 2,048 pixel resolution (265 dpi), the new iPad Pro offers an optional active "Apple Pencil" whose dual tilt sensors allow shading and pressure effects like a conventional pencil. While the super-thin iPad Pro is fragile, its high resolution and active narrow-tip pen will undoubtedly have an impact on industrial and vertical market tablet devices. [See Apple iPad Pro] -- Posted Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Review: Dell Latitude 14 Rugged Extreme
The Dell Latitude 14 Rugged Extreme is the follow-up to the Latitude E6420 XFR, which for several years had been one of the best fully rugged laptops available. We wondered what Dell had done for an encore, and how the new big Dell compared to its storied predecessor. After using a 14 Rugged Extreme for several months, we have a good idea, and our detailed review explains what the new full-size rugged Dell is all about and what it can do. [See review of the Dell Latitude 14 Rugged Extreme] -- Posted Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Getac sees increased August revenue
DigiTimes reports that ruggedized computing device maker Getac Technology has reported consolidated revenues of NT$1.53 billion (US$47 million) for August 2015, increasing 1.9% on month and 9.23% on year. Its January-August consolidated revenues totaled NT$11.69 billion (US$358 million), growing 17.67% on year. -- Posted Tuesday, September 8, 2015

RAM Mounts for marine adventures
RAM Mounts announced it is now offering mounting systems for the newest Raymarine Fishfinders. The mounts are designed with a RAM 1″ diameter patented rubber ball and socket system that has adjustment points at both ends of the double socket arm; allowing for almost infinite adjustment and perfect viewing angles. Available are, among others, the Tough-Claw™ Mount, suction cup mounts, flat surface mounts, as well as rail mounts, and transducer arms. We can think of numerous other marine applications! [See RAM Mounts RAM Raymarine mounting systems] -- Posted Thursday, September 3, 2015

Advantech unveils Skylake-based embedded computing platforms
Advantech has unveiled its latest range of embedded computing platforms equipped with 6th generation Intel Core processors. These platforms comprise Computer On Modules SOM-5897 and SOM-6897, a MI/O Extension Single Board Computer MIO-5272, Industrial Motherboards AIMB-275 and AIMB-585. With Skylake, Advantech expects these Embedded Core Group products to offer dramatically enhanced CPU and graphics performance, wide power and feature scalability, and advanced features that boost IoT designs from the edge to the cloud. -- Posted Thursday, September 3, 2015

You Decided You Need Forklift-Mounted Tablets. Now What?
For more than 20 years, forklift-mounted computers, originally known as vehicle-mounted terminals (VMT), have been transforming the way products move throughout the supply chain. Early implementations of these VMTs usually emulated traditional host-based terminal applications. Adding barcode scanning greatly improved the timeliness and accuracy of the data, and these days it's mostly rugged tablets for forklifts. MobileDemand presents some considerations to think about at "You Decided You Need Forklift-Mounted Tablets. Now What?" -- Posted Thursday, September 3, 2015

What happened in rugged computing 5 years ago: Sept. 2010
In September 2010, Psion Teklogix introduced the "Modulus"-based Omnii XT10 ultra-rugged handheld, Intermec the CS40 rugged keypad handheld, Motorola the tough MC65 enterprise digital assistant and MC75-HC healthcare handheld, Handheld the Algiz XRW ultra-rugged netbook, and Getac the V200 convertible. We reviewed the Panasonic Toughbook 31, the Trimble Yuma tablet, and Winmate's IP67-sealed rugged panels. LXE announced a series of media and partner events, but a major investor already demanded that LXE be sold. Jon Peddie Research predicted embedded graphics market share would increase, but level off in the low 50% through 2015. RuggedPCReview said, "if you need 3D and, especially, OpenGL performance, discrete graphics are almost a must." Android had problems accommodating devices with different screen sizes and resolutions. Guns USA predicted "the world market for touch screens is projected to top $14.5 billion dollars in 2015." And Intel announced the E6xx "Tunnel Creek," its first System-on-Chip Atom. [See September 2010 news archive] -- Posted Thursday, September 3, 2015

Intel introduces "Skylake" 6th generation of Core processors
Although 4th gen "Haswell" is still news and we've only seen a few 5th gen "Broadwell" based rugged devices, Intel has introduced the 6th generation "Skylake" of Core processors. Skyline comes in four series, those being the Y-Series (2-in-1, tablets, Intel Compute Sticks), U-Series (thin-and-light notebooks, portable all-in-ones), H-Series (gaming notebooks, mobile workstations, and S-Series (desktops, etc). Y-Series chips will go by m3, m5, and m7 whereas the other series remain with the i3, i5, i7 (plus Pentum) nomenclature. After Broadwell brought a shrinking to 14nm lithography, Skylake refines it with a new architecture/layout and substantially improved Intel HD, Iris and Iris Pro graphics. Special emphasis is on power conservation and improved performance via optimized parallel processing and other. [See Introducing 6th Generation Intel Core and a list of launched and announced Skylake processors] -- Posted Wednesday, September 2, 2015

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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.

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