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Panasonic Intros Toughbook C1 Tablet

One of the main target markets for the lightweight, rugged tablet PC is healthcare.

Panasonic Toughbook C1 Tablet
(click image for larger view)
Panasonic Toughbook C1 Tablet PC

Panasonic on Tuesday introduced what it said is its lightest rugged tablet PC.

The 12.1-inch Toughbook C1 convertible tablet is capable of withstanding a 30-inch drop. The system is powered by an Intel Core i5 520M vPro processor and weighs 3.2 pounds with one battery, which offers five hours of runtime. A second battery boosts the weight to 3.7 pounds, but doubles the battery life.

The C1 has a multi-touch display, offering finger and gesture input, as well as an electronic stylus pen for handwriting recognition. Features that add to the PC's toughness includes a shock-mounted, 250 GB hard drive and a triple-hinge design that includes two for opening and closing the screen and another for rotating the display to tablet mode. The separation of tasks reduces hinge failure, according to the company.

Other rugged feature include the ability to withstand liquid spills on the keyboard of up to six ounces. In addition, the lid and base of the PC can handle more than 225 pounds of pressure.

One of the main markets for the C1 is healthcare. To meet the industry's requirements, Panasonic said it made its latest product lighter and faster and gave it more battery life than previous Toughbooks. The Core i5 520M chip powering the C1 has a clock speed up to 2.93 GHz.

The C1 comes with embedded Wi-Fi and Bluetooth wireless technology, and is available with optional Gobi2000 mobile broadband technology from Qualcomm. Gobi makes it easier for IT departments to set up the laptop for multi-carrier wireless deployments.

The C1 is scheduled to be available in June and have a starting price of $2,499.

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