SPECIAL SECTION: The Newest in Rugged Laptops

Sometimes first responders are like mailmen: rain or shine, or any number of weather conditions, they have a job to do, and sometimes doing that job requires using a computer outside of an office setting. Having to use technology out on the streets can complicate things for officers because something can always go wrong, therefore it’s best to use the right kind of equipment. When it comes to using computers on the go for first responders, especially police officers, it’ s best to have a rugged laptop handy versus a regular office/business-type laptop.

Dell Latitude 7424 Rugged Extreme
DT Research
Durabook Z14l
Getac V110
Panasonic Toughbook 55
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Dell Latitude 7424 Rugged Extreme

One name that’s always recognizable in the computer industry is Dell, and they have been making rugged laptops for a long time. The latest in their offerings is their new Latitude 7424 Rugged Extreme, a 14” Rugged Extreme Notebook for the harshest environments. Starting at $3,499, the Latitude 7424 boasts 7th Gen Intel Core i3-7130U Processor; Windows 10 Pro 64bit; English, French and Spanish language options; an 8GB, 2x4GB, 2666MHz; and a customizable processor. Dell’s Latitude 7424 also offers a secure and manageable rugged product that features reliable connectivity and outdoor-readable displays.

According to the company, Latitude Rugged products are designed from the ground up with high-performance materials for maximum durability and data protection. Ultra polymers with high-compression strength provide impact protection, while magnesium alloy provides a rigid backbone. The laptop has been drop tested from six feet for impact resistance and certified by IP-65 ingress protection to ensure no environment is too hazardous for this fully rugged notebook. A special feature of the Latitude 7424 Rugged Extreme display is that it supports both glove touch and a passive pen, so that users can capture information in any setting.

These laptops have Direct-View outdoor-readable displays that allow users to control reflectivity and reduce glare, Direct-View displays rely less on backlight brightness and conserve battery life. They are designed to look readable in all conditions, including indoors and in low-light conditions. Dells rugged laptops also help users experience peak performance in extreme temperatures with QuadCool, a fully-sealed fan-based thermal management system that keeps critical system components running cool while protecting them from dust and water ingress. Supplemental conductive cooling reduces fan use for quieter operation and longer battery life.

You also never have to fear the dust, dirt and rain, because Dell’a Latitude Rugged products are sealed from the elements to protect all important data. Compression gasketing at all potential points of ingress allows fully rugged notebooks and tablets to achieve an IP-65 level of protection from dust and water, while the Latitude 14 Rugged notebook is protected to IP-52.

The Dell Latitude 7424 also offers:
Flexible storage: Store critical data and then some with up to three removable M.2 solid state drives (SSD) for up to 4TB of total storage. Long battery life: Hot swappable Dual Batteries provide continuous power so you’re ready for the day shift, night shift and everything in between. Convenient connections: Seamless connectivity is at your fingertips with USB 3.0 Type-C support.
Price starts at $3,499. For more information contact: (877) 649-6431

DT Research

DT Research is another company that offers rugged tablets with optional keyboard docks to transform their tablets into a notebook–type computer. The DT Research DT370Q rugged tablet features the integration of a 7-inch capacitive touchscreen, Android operating system, and a high performance yet energy-efficient processor within a slim, lightweight and durable package.
With built-in back camera, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and integrated data capture options, this tablet offers seamless information capture and transmission for improved workflow. With IP65, MIL-STD- 810G certification, the DT370Q Tablet provides reliable operation in harsh, mission-critical environments.

DT Research offers an optional detachable keyboard that is easy to connect to the tablets and serves as a protective cover when folded over the tablet, shielding the screen from scratches and bumps. The two-in-one design of the detachable keyboard and the rugged tablet provides users with both a laptop and tablet experience. DT Research also offers 8- and 10.1-inch touchscreen tablets. For more information contact: DTResearch.com

Durabook Z14l

The new Durabook Z14l has an innovative new design combines stylish form and fully-rugged function. “The addition of the Z14I to the Durabook family is an example of our commitment to innovation,” said Joe Guest, President, Durabook Americas. “Proprietary technology, unprecedented I/O port offering and boundless customization options make the Z14I a true purpose-built rugged laptop.”
Combined with the latest 8th Generation Intel Core processor and graphics capabilities, the Z14I can handle data intensive tasks at speed. It has been built to withstand even the harshest of environments. The Z14I fully rugged laptop features a DynaVue 14, 1000 NIT sunlight readable touch panel display. A sealed, fanless design withstands the harshest conditions facing the Z14I. The Z14I allows for multiple configurations and offers robust I/O port options.

The Z14I’s mechanical design and rigorous component selection allows it to adapt to any environment. It is MIL-STD-810G certified with additional items such as explosive atmosphere, solar radiation, salt fog, and fungus resistance; it is also certified for IP 65 and a 6 feet drop guarantee. It also has MIL-STD-461G and ANSI-C1D2 certifications, which makes it more rugged than previous models.
The Durabook Z14l is MIL-STD-810G Certified: 6’ Drop, shock, vibration, rain, dust, altitude, freeze/thaw, high/low temperature, temperature shock, humidity, explosive atmosphere, solar radiation, salt fog, fungus resistance.

The Full HD 1080p widescreen display alone with DynaVue technology reveals every detail of visual image at a glance. Not only it has the brightness of up to 1,000 nits but also the light-filtering technology makes the Z14I the best rugged laptop with highest contrast ratio, which helps to eliminate internal reflections that enhances viewing clarity when viewed at different angles. The Z14I device provides a media bay for several setup options; such as, an optical disk drive, a second battery or a second SSD storage to select from. Price ranges from $3,599.00 to $3,799.00. For more information contact: Sales@DurabookAmericas.com or (800) 995-8946


The latest from Fujitsu in rugged items comes in two tablets that are semi-rugged: the Fujitsu Stylistic Q739 and the Stylistic Q509. While these are not laptop notebooks, and not fully rugged, they both come with a keyboard dock, which turn them into equivalent of a semi-rugged laptop, according to Angela Tassinger, public relations manager, corporate communications for Fujitsu.
“When the Newport News Police Department wanted to upgrade its mobile devices, it deployed Fujitsu tablets to 143 police vehicles making officers more productive and efficient,” says Tassinger.

The Q739 is a highly durable (MIL-STD-810G compliant) two-in-one detachable tablet with reinforced corners, powered by the latest 8th generation Intel processor. With a weight starting at 780 grams, the device offers you ultimate portability and up to 10 hours of battery backup. It has an integrated fingerprint sensor; 13.3-inch Full HD anti-glare display, a pen input, and it can support 4K pressure levels. It also has a pen holder with inductive charging functionality. The optional backlit keyboard dock with LAN and charging port and optional TPU cover convert this tablet into a rugged laptop alternative.

The Q509 is a semi-ruggedized tablet with a spill and dust proof (IP54) housing (Military Standard MIL-STD-810G compliant), which also has reinforced corners for extra durability. This model has a 10.1-inch anti-glare touch screen with pen support; embedded 4G/LTE; and a high-performance battery with increased charging voltage (up to 80% in one hour). It also has an integrated pen holder and integrated fingerprint sensor.

The optional keyboard dock with additional LAN port and TPU cover convert this tablet into a more rugged laptop alternative. “Both devices allow officers or investigators the convenience to work seamlessly, on the road, at the scene or in the office and ensure access to the data they need at any time,” Tassinger says. “As a two-in-one detachable for tough working conditions, the Fujitsu Q739 and Q509 offer the flexibility of tablet mobility and notebook productivity in one device with pen and touch support.”
For more information contact: Fujitsu.com

Getac V110

The 5th generation Getac V110 fully rugged convertible notebook is the best convertible this company has ever made, according to a recent press release by the company. It features a large 11.6” widescreen display and a design that is as thin and light as ever, quickly transforming from notebook to tablet as needed. The V110 features a large 11.6” display that utilizes LumiBond 2.0 technology for incredible clarity both indoors and outside in direct sunlight. The 11.6” widescreen display is ideally suited providing plenty of real estate to run Windows and your apps on.

The V110 takes advantage of the company’s LumiBond 2.0 touchscreen technology, which bonds the display glass with the touch panel and LCD, creating a single pane that is more durable and readable, and offers better contrast and more crisp colors than any other rugged laptop display, according to the company. It features four advanced touch modes (touch/rain, glove or pen mode, plus an optional digitizer mode), and the included hard-tip stylus enables users to capture signatures and take more precise notes on drawings, maps or forms.

The V110 can be configured with either the latest Intel Whiskey Lake Core i5 or i7 processor, delivering an amazing level of CPU performance. Also, Getac’s V110 features the new Intel UHD Graphics 620, providing a level of responsiveness and frame rate for both 3D graphics and video. The V110’s, hot-swappable dual-battery design allows for potentially infinite, uninterrupted battery life.

This enables you to remove one of the two rechargeable batteries and replace it with a fresh battery without ever shutting down apps or your Windows OS. The V110 comes with a full-size, waterproof membrane keyboard. Its 88 standard-sized, island-style independent keys provide an unmatched premium feel and increased durability. It also included enhanced security with a fingerprint reader, and a three-year bumper-to-bumper warranty. Prices are available if you contact the company directly for a quote. For more information contact: GetacSales_US@getac.com or 949-681-2900

Panasonic Toughbook 55

“In the field, law enforcement officers cannot risk a dead laptop or tablet, and while standard devices may fall victim to these interruptions, Panasonic’s Toughbook 55 was built to withstand these influences without missing a beat, reducing downtime and ensuring officers are supported at all times,” says to Kay Stewart, Director of Sales, Panasonic System Solutions Company of North America. The Toughbook 55 is a modular, customizable, and configurable rugged laptop that is able to accommodate the needs and preferences of mobile workers regardless of their specific job in the field. “It’s the first plug-and-play laptop with interchangeable xPAKs that users can change on-the-go based on their day-to-day work needs or environments,” Stewart adds.

The Toughbook 55, and its predecessors in the Toughbook line, is exceptionally popular among law enforcement professionals, among other industries, for its customizable, modular nature, extended battery life and field-specific capabilities such as glove touch and speech recognition, according to Stewart.  “Industry studies show that Panasonic maintains a 73% market share in the ruggedized laptop and tablet space, and of the roughly 25,000 public police departments in the United States, Panasonic has equipped thousands with Toughbook devices to support operations,” Stewart says.

Law enforcement officers need mobile technology they can rely on every day in the field, and especially in times of emergency. The Toughbook 55 brings powerful performance, backwards compatibility and an unprecedented battery life, providing law enforcement with the technology they need to get the job done safely and effectively. Industry-specific capabilities, including speech recognition, glove touch, brightear displays for use outdoors and backlit keyboards promote officer safety and increase situational awareness in the field.

Able to last up to 40 hours with the additional battery xPAK, the Toughbook 55 has the longest lifespan in its class, and offers backwards compatibility for docking and accessories for ease of use. As a follow up to its predecessor, the Toughbook 54, this laptop has more than 50 enhancements, and is built to be flexible, reliable and to outperform other rugged laptops. “There’s nothing on the market quite like it,” Stewart says, adding that against its competition in the market, it’s the lightest and thinnest in its class, yet is rugged enough to endure significant and extreme conditions. For more information contact: (888) 245-6344

Refurbished Options

Most people know you can buy almost any type of electronic device online as a refurbished product, but most police agencies have probably never considered refurbished laptops as an option. For many cash-strapped agencies, buying even one brand new rugged laptop can be very expensive, especially because rugged laptops can be much more expensive than a non rugged laptop.

OC Rugged Laptops in Garden grove, Calif., is one of the main resellers of refurbished Panasonic Toughbooks rugged laptops. The models are slightly older than the newly released ones, but can start as low as $500 per unit. OC Rugged Laptops is a provider of military-grade Panasonic Toughbooks and vehicle mounts. Their varied selection includes both new and refurbished models. Every tough laptop in their inventory is customizable, so buyers can get just the amount of memory, processing power and functionality required to get the job done without having to overspend on bells and whistles they don’t need.

In addition to selling Panasonic Rugged Toughbooks, the company also carries RAM Mounts and vehicle mount hardware so that users can secure the laptop inside the police vehicle. OC Rugged Laptops also is a Microsoft Registered refurbisher that restores Panasonic Toughbooks according to the most stringent standards, and offers a wide selection of models. Every laptop is customized for the user and guaranteed at the lowest price. If a better find a lower price on the same model with the same features, the company will match it or beat it with a better configuration or warranty period.

The company also offers customer service and after-purchase support, free shipping, free return shipping and free repair shipping.

OC Rugged Laptops
(866) 511-6113

There are two other California-based companies that also offer Panasonic refurbished rugged laptops. Tuffbooks4less.com (866) 308- 3380 and Ruggednotebooks.com (866) 278-4433. Both offer units as low as $325.
Fujitsu also offers refurbished tablets of its own brand.