Panasonic has been making super durable laptops for the last 20 years, so when we say that its new Toughbook CF-33 is its most rugged system yet, that's saying something. It will be available in the U.S. in June starting around $3,649.
Designed for use in the military, construction, government and emergency services, there's not much room for error either, because one point of failure could results in the loss of life. That's why the CF-33 features a hardened magnesium chassis, IP65 rating for water resistance and a drop resistance up to 4 feet while in operation.
And in keeping with the times, the CF-33 also features a 12-inch 2160 x 1440 detachable screen with a 3:2 aspect ratio, allowing it to go from laptop to tablet to presentation device in seconds, just don't forget to undo the heavy duty latches connecting its tablet body to its keyboard dock. The display also features touch sensitive technology so that users can operate the CF-33 while wearing gloves, and with a rated brightness of 1200 nits, there's no doubt about it having solid outdoor visibility.
For a super rugged system, the CF-33's specs aren't too shabby either. You get a 7th-gen Intel Core i5 CPU with vPRO, up to 16GB of RAM and a 500GB SSD. And since all the main components are found in the CF-33's tablet body, you can order it without the keyboard dock if you want. There's even a hot swappable battery system, so you pop in a fresh power pack without needing to turn off the computer. Panasonic will sell both standard batteries with 10 hours of battery life and more powerful, "long life" batteries for up to 20 hours.
The most impressive thing about the CF-33 is its flexibility. The screen can easily be taken off, flipped around and reattached, and then whisked away using the CF-33's built-in handle. The ports hidden behind those big chunky gaskets can also be configured to suit your company's needs, as can its plethora of security options which includes NFC, and various smartcard readers.
But my favorite part is actually something simple: the pop-out holder for the Toughbook's IP-55 digitizer pen. It's part secret agent, part simply utility, and it all leads to making sure that when you really need it, the Toughbook will have your back.
If you already own a laptop vehicle dock for Toshiba's previous best-selling Toughbook, the CF-31, an adapter will be made available so that you don't have to buy all new equipment.
Additional contributions by Andrew E. Freedman