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TechnologyWhat Is NewRugged PCs at CES 2008

Rugged PCs at CES 2008

CES has been a great place for resellers, retailers, and partners to get product roadmaps, not to mention a good place for press and general audience to get a peek at future products. Though the target audience for these products is consumers, there really is a variety of product types on the show floor.

At CES 2008 there were several ruggedized PC companies showing off their wares. Though I suppose you could make an argument for a rugged PC in your Hummer, it’s no secret that delivery services, hotels, assembly plants, dispatch, government and military primarily use them. Three products stand out:

Roper Mobile’s SwitchBack ultra-mobile PC made a showing at CES 2008. It features a durable QWERTY keypad, removable hard drive, and hot swappable battery. The custom communications device (left) and Backpack (middle and attached on right) are available separately.

SwitchBack UMPCSwitchBack UMPC

Mobile Demand came to the annual Tablet PC & UMPC gathering and even helped to sponsor it! (Thanks, Matt!) Resellers, customers, and press interested in Mobile Demand rugged Tablet PCs met during the show. The xTablet T8700 offers backlit numeric keypad, integrated bar code reader, and has a cool mitt grip for holding onto your rugged Tablet while working.

TabletKiosk also offers ruggedized units. During CES it announced a new partnership with Getac to offer a fully rugged 8.4" Tablet PC with touch screen. At under 3lbs, the g840XT is a fanless design, 80GB hard drive, and has several accessory options. TabletKiosk also attended this year’s Gathering in force and sponsored some of the giveaways. (Thank you, Martin and Gail!)

It’s great to see diversity in the PC marketplace and good to see it promoted at CES.

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