Coming out of CES 2014, Panasonic has introduced their latest model Toughpad. This one is arriving as the FZ-M1, and similar to other models in the lineup, this one is fully-rugged. Basically, another waterproof, dustproof and shockproof tablet. The FZ-M1 sports a 7-inch display and will arrive running Windows 8.1 Pro.
The power comes by way of a 4th generation Intel Core i5 vPro processor, which coincidentally has this being touted as the first rugged 7-inch tablet with a fanless design. That bit allowed the tablet to meet the IP65 standards which protects it against rain and dust. Panasonic also has this model certified for MIL-STD-810G and ANSI 12.12.1. The latter means it is certified for use in incendiary environments.
The display has a resolution of 1280 x 800 and it is 10-point capacitive multitouch with an available (and optional) stylus pen. Along with the Intel processor, the FZ-M1 has 8GB of RAM, 128GB or 256GB of SSD storage, dual-band WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.0, USB 3.0 and a microSD memory card slot. There is also a 720p front-facing camera, a 5 megapixel rear-facing camera and an option to add 4G LTE connectivity.
Panasonic has said the tablet will offer up to 8 hours of battery life, with an option to double that to 16 hours. The extended battery life comes by way of an optional hot swap bridge battery and high capacity battery. As for the pricing and availability, Panasonic has said it will be selling from $2,099 and available in the early spring.