Panasonic launches Toughbook handheld device for industrial working environments

Toughbook

Panasonic has released the Toughbook FZ-T1 handheld device – a slimline, rugged model designed for mobile workforces, such as the manufacturing and mining industries.

“The Toughbook FZ-T1 is an important addition to our rugged handheld portfolio,” said Clare Hose, Toughbook’s product marketing manager for Panasonic Australia. “Mobile technology is clearly the future for business, but technology churn continues to be a significant cost challenge for organisations. The business need for rugged devices is evolving from the traditional environmental concerns of withstanding drops and water and dust protection, to features such as the type of viewing screen, battery life and power management, data security and communication capabilities.”

More customers are recognising that a rugged device is not the same as a regular handheld device. Consumer devices have components that are not designed to withstand continuous use in difficult conditions, and are liable to break down from shock, dust, moisture, heat and cold.

Panasonic also plans to release the Toughbook FZ-L1, a lightweight, rugged Android tablet perfect for edge computing and customer-facing mobile workers looking for a versatile and cost-effective device. There is a seven-inch display model that is = available with voice and data capability for both inside and field-based workers.

Collaboration is also a key ingredient for Panasonic when developing new products.

“We work really closely with our end users, so when an opportunity comes to us, our business development managers go out and assess the opportunity and they really try to understand what the end-use case is going to be,” said Hose. “For example, in the mining industry, a person might be working remotely and might need to take some photos, so they are 4G connected and can send it straight back to base.”

Panasonic has also made sure that it can be used well into the future in that the operating system software will be updated regularly.

“When it comes to the updates with the software it is currently at Andorid 8.1 with an update path to 9.0,” said Hose. “We expect there will be future upgrade paths beyond that to 10 as Android progress. It’s a future-proofed device.”

Key features:

4G Model Option
It will be available in a 4G model, with voice and data capabilities. It has a Qualcomm Snapdragon quad-core CPU, 16GB Flash and 2GB Ram storage.

Slim and lightweight
It weighs just under 240g and is designed for military standard 810G, dust and water resistant to IP68, tumble tested and capable of withstanding drops of up to 1.5m, and operating within a temperature range of -10 to +50°C.

Display
It has 10-finger input, daylight readable screen, is capable of operating in the rain and can be used with gloved hands or an optional passive pen.

Barcode scanning options
The Toughbook FZ-T1 has an enterprise-class, straight-line barcode reader built-in with two trigger buttons (either side of the device) to make it easy for left and right-handed operators.

Long operating times
It comes with a 12-hour battery life and warm swappable functionality, allowing the user to switch their own batteries without interrupting work.

Clear communication
It has noise suppression technology and loudspeaker. It also has an eight-megapixel rear camera

Wide range of accessories
Accessories include barcode reader guns, single and multiple chargers and cradles, holster belts, battery packs, passive stylus pens and protective display films.

Panasonic devices also offer Google Mobile Services (GMS), a collection of Google applications and APIs that support functionality across devices.

Price
$1899