LAS VEGAS: Panasonic aims to provide business users with rugged and durable Android tablet, which is set to launch later this year.
The device sports a white bezel with a black trim and the first thing we noticed was that it was quite heavy to hold in one hand - and seemed to weigh abit more than the 970g touted.
The Toughpad has a 10.1in display with a resolution of 1,024x768. Another feature that is immediately noticeable is the matte finish on the screen, which gives it quite a dull appearance, but makes it easy to view in bright lighting condition. We found the screen responded well to hand gestures and input from the included stylus. The hard buttons along the bottom were a bit awkward to press, but screen will be used to navigate most of the time so this isn't too much of a problem.
Panasonic will ship the device with Android Honeycomb 3.2, and it isexpected to be upgradeable to Ice Cream Sandwich after release. The tablet will be powered by a Marvell 1.2GHz dual-core processor, which comes with a system-on-a-chip FIPS 140-2 level 2 security. This will give it an advantage over regular tablets such as the iPad 2, and be especially attractive to those who want to store confidential information.
Ports include micro HDMI, micro SD and micro USB slots and these are sealed away tightly on the back along with the battery. The manufacturer touts a 10-hour battery life, and Panasonic will allow the cell to be replaced.
Panasonic wasn't keen for us to drop test the device, claiming that it was a hand built prototype. However, the firm is confident that the tablet will be able to survice drops onto hard surfaces from heights of up to 4 feet and will offer a three year warranty to back up its claims.
The Toughpad is set to launch in spring 2012, and it is expected to retail at €850 + VAT for the standard model and €999 + VAT for the 3G edition.
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