The Allegro CX from Juniper Systems is an ultra-rugged, no-nonsense handheld computer for use in a variety of demanding field applications. It is a flexible tool for outdoor data collection job jobs, and Juniper Systems and their partners offer a broad lineup of dedicated software for it.
The Allegro uses the traditional "flashlight-style" form factor to provide a tough handheld terminal that is very functional and ergonomically designed with a balanced weight distribution so it is easy to carry and operate.
The Allegro can either be used via touch or stylus, or via its extensive 62-key keypad that offers all the familiar functionality of a standard keyboard. A total of no fewer than 12 function keys can be hard-coded or programmed as softkeys. The keys provide tactile feedback and the keyboard bezel is removable for cleaning without affecting the seal.
The Allegro has a landscape-oriented transflective 240 x 320 pixel LCD with an MX1178 graphics accelerator that measures 3.8 inches diagonally. It has an adjustable LED backlight and works even in ultra-low temperatures without a heater. For applications where size and contrast matter most, Juniper offers a version with a 4.1-inch monochrome display with a paper-like white background.
On the technology front, the Allegro uses the time-proven 400MHz version of Marvell's PXA255 application processor to run Windows CE.Net 4.2. The device comes with 128MB of RAM and up to a gigabyte of solid state disk storage. A standard user-accessible PC Card slot can be used to add storage or a variety of wireless or other functions. Bluetooth Class 2 is available as an integrated module. There is -- rare these days -- an IR port as well as USB and two serial ports with standard 9-pin connectors.
Since it will primarily be used outdoors, the Allegro is extremely durable. It is sealed to IP67 specifications, which means it is dust-proof and won't get damaged even in driving rain or if it falls into a puddle of water. An extremely wide operating range from -22 to 130 degrees Fahrenheit means it can be used practically anywhere.
The Allegro is powered by a 14 watt-hour NiMH battery that lasts 12 to 20 hours depending on what application is run. An optional alkaline battery holder is available.
Juniper Systems offers a variety of expansion pods for the Allegro. The pods are fully sealed and can add bar code scanning, RFID, WiFi and Trimble Lassen LP GPS. There are also special data acquisition pods for use with National Instrument's PCMCIA and PCMCIA-4050 cards.