Notebook forged with feds in mind

Among Panasonic's two additions to its Toughbook line of ruggedized notebooks

is the Toughbook 48, a semi-ruggedized system tailored to government customers.

Panasonic unveiled the notebook at the Comdex Fall 2000 trade show in Las

Vegas this week.

The Toughbook 48 features an easily removable battery and a shock-mounted

hard drive, two USB ports and a new 256M RAM chip that allows for memory

expandabililty up to a whopping 384M. A magnesium alloy lid encases the

display.

"The Toughbook 48 was built with direct input from Panasonic's federal customers,

" said Jan O'Hara, national federal sales manager for Panasonic. The ease

with which users can remove the battery and hard drive makes it "an indespensable

tool for the soldier in both the office and on deployment," she said.

The Toughbook 48 is available with either a 13.3-inch or 14.1-inch TFT active-matrix

LCD display and features a sleek, streamlined dark-blue case. Only 1.8 inches

thick, the notebook weighs 7.48 pounds with the battery.

With the wide range of options available, Panasonic representatives said

the Toughbook 48 can be configured to cost from about $1,500 to almost $3,000.

The processor is available in 600 MHz and 700 MHz versions, and the hard

drives range from 10G to 20G. The system includes an integrated 24X CD-ROM

drive or DVD drive as well as either a floppy drive or LS-120 drive.

The Tougbook 48 is available on a host of federal contract vehicles, including

the Army's indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity Portable-3 program,

the General Services Administration schedule, the Air Force Standard System

Group's Information Technology Tools blanket purchase agreement, the Navy's

Fleet Industrial Supply Center and the Navy's Tactical Advanced Computer

program.

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