Not that most of us care, but Panasonic updated their Toughbook 19 and 30 today.  The updates are rather blase, but should prove worthy for those hammering away in ‘the field’.  So what’s new?  Both laptops have received 1000 cd/m2 brightness LCDs with ‘circular polarization technology and anti-glare (AG) plus anti-reflective (AR) screen treatments to enhance screen viewability’, improved security management, 40% longer battery life, larger capacity hard drives and optional SSDs.  Not that most ‘telecom’ workers perform covert ops, but just in case Panasonic has also tossed in the ability to go ‘black’ (something they call ‘concealed mode’), which basically means pushing a button shuts down a select number of illuminated components.

The Panasonic Toughbook 19 and 30 are available now for $3,749 and $3,649 respectively.

For the full run down check the press release below

Panasonic Upgrades Its Rugged Toughbook(R) 19 and 30 Mobile Laptops Delivering Improved Performance and Viewability in All Environments

Battery Life Also Improved — Now Offering Up to 10 Hours of In-Field Use

SECAUCUS, N.J.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–January 27, 2009–

Panasonic Computer Solutions Company, manufacturer of durable, reliable Panasonic Toughbook(R) mobile computers, today introduced upgrades to its Panasonic Toughbook 30 clamshell rugged laptop and its Toughbook 19 rugged convertible tablet computer. Both Toughbook notebooks incorporate 1,000 nit LCDs, circular polarization technology and anti-glare (AG) plus anti-reflective (AR) screen treatments to enhance screen viewability, further improving in-field usability for mobile workers. Additional upgrades to the Toughbook 30 and Toughbook 19 include improved security and remote management thanks to Intel(R) Centrino(R) 2 with vPro(TM) technology, expanded memory capabilities, 40% longer battery lives, larger capacity hard drives, and optional SSDs.

Working outdoors in the bright daylight or in a vehicle with sunlight streaming through the windows is a fact of life for field workers, military personnel and first responders. Having a computer screen that is bright and crisp enough to be easily viewed, while not depleting essential battery power is crucial for a mobile workforce. The updated Toughbook 30 and Toughbook 19 offer improved full sunlight-viewability by incorporating circular polarization and other technologies, including 9 to 1,000 nit LCD brightness as well as AG and AR screen treatments. Not only has screen viewability been improved, but Panasonic’s engineers have also enhanced the battery life of both devices, now delivering up to ten hours of field-usability on a full charge with the standard battery.

“For many of our users, the ability to work effectively in all conditions, from pitch darkness to direct sunlight, is critical,” said Kyp Walls, director of product management, Panasonic Computer Solutions Company. “Panasonic has always created rugged mobile devices that offer exceptional viewability in all environments. The more useable our Toughbook notebooks are, the more productive our customers can be. The Toughbook 30 and Toughbook 19 are great examples of the exceptional engineering found in all Toughbook mobile computers. This level of engineering has made the Toughbook brand so popular with users in mission-critical environments.”

Panasonic has achieved engineering milestones with the extraordinarily bright screens it has developed for its rugged notebook computers. Toughbook 30 and 19 notebooks have LCD brightness measuring at 1,000 nits — a milestone first achieved on the Toughbook 30 in 2007. Both devices also offer exceptional low nit ratings — critical for operation in low light environments where less illumination improves user safety. A nit is a measurement of light in candelas per square meter, essentially how much light is coming from the display.

New Toughbook 30 and 19 mobile computers also include a “concealed mode” which allows users to easily turn all device lights off — screen and LEDs — using a function (Fn) key, without having to power down the machine. The feature allows users to customize which attributes get turned off when the Fn key is pressed including screen, LEDs, backlit keyboards, volume, and wireless radios (Wi-Fi, Bluetooth(R), and mobile broadband). Furthermore, users can select if they wish the screen to be turned off, or just set to the minimum brightness level. The “concealed mode” feature is ideal for military and law enforcement applications and for jurisdictions requiring vehicle-mounted PCs to have their screens turned off while the vehicle is in operation.

Every Toughbook(R) notebook uses some form of AG screen treatment because, even inside, fluorescent lights may impair screen readability. Rugged units — like the Toughbook 30 and 19 — designed for use in vehicles or outdoors, incorporate more advanced AR screen treatments. All Toughbook notebooks also include individual control options for a wide range of screen brightness so users can make appropriate adjustments, depending on the ambient light in their work environment.

Christen Costa

Grew up back East, got sick of the cold and headed West. Since I was small I have been pushing buttons - both electronic and human. With an insatiable need for tech I thought "why not start a blog focusing on technology, and use my dislikes and likes to post on gadgets."