Not all tablets are created equal, and just like computers, there are some models out there which are way tougher than the rest, although it comes with a price, sacrificing mobility and sporting a higher retail sticker. Panasonic has been in the tough notebook/tablet market for quite some time now, and this time around they have expanded their horizons to include the Panasonic Toughpad FZ-M1 which was first introduced in January this year, hitting the US retail market later this month from $1,299 all the way to $2,099, depending on the hardware configuration.
Do bear in mind that such steep pricing automatically moves it out of the mass consumer market, since it was not meant to target that particular market segment in the first place. Instead, the Panasonic Toughpad FZ-M1 happens to be a portable device which targets professionals who happen to work in tough environments.
Expect the Panasonic Toughpad FZ-M1 to feature a rugged, shock-resistant case which is capable of handling vibration, humidity, and extreme temperatures, among others, as it has been specifically designed to meet the MIL-STD-810G standard for drops up to 5 feet, as well as rated IP65 for water and dust resistance, thanks to its fully sealed case which boasts of a fanless design.
Sporting a 7” sunlight readable display at 1280 x 800 pixels, the entry level model will run on an Intel Celeron N2807 Bay trail processor (while the far more expensive $2,099 model will sport an Intel Core i5 Haswell processor), accompanied by 4GB RAM and a 64GB solid state drive, while there are also options of 128GB and 256GB options SSDs, including doubling up on your RAM.
Other hardware specifications include 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity, USB 3.0 support, a microSDXC memory card slot, a 5MP camera at the back with a 720P front-facing camera, among others. It tips the scales at 1.2 pounds, which offers sturdiness at the expense of portability. [Press Release]