Panasonic brings "Tough" brand to tablets

Posted by Mike Luttrell

You probably know the Panasonic Toughbook for its crazy viral ads that show the laptop going through mountains of abuse.

Now that same kind of rugged design and construction is getting more portable, as Panasonic has unveiled its new "Toughpad" line.

Like its Toughbook brothers, though, don't expect to pick up one of these ultra durable tablets unless you're willing to plunk down a pretty penny. The flagship 10-inch Toughpad A1 will retail at $1,299.

Of course, this tablet isn't really designed for those of you who are just generally clumsy. The Toughpad was built to withstand such environments as military combat and utility field work.

Panasonic says it can operate in full optimal conditions in temperatures of up to 122 degrees Fahrenheit and as cold as 14 degrees. It's safe if dropped from as high as four feet, and the Gorilla Glass screen prevents it from getting scratched by keys or other forms of normal abuse.

As for the technical specs, the A1 sports a 1.2 GHz dual-core processor, 1 GB of RAM, dual 4G compatibility for both Wimax and LTE, front and rear cameras, and ports for microUSB, microSD, and HDMI. The display is also designed to be readable in daylight.

The A1 is due out for release in early 2012, with a smaller 7-inch version, the B1, set to come out shortly thereafter.