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Rugged PC Review Monthly News Archive [ Back to news index]

November 2007

General Dynamics Itronix amasses awards
General Dynamics Itronix amasses multiple honors, including 2007 Innovation Award from Cygnus Law Enforcement Group for the GoBook XR-1 and Military Embedded Systems Magazine's Editor's Choice Selection for DynaVue Touchscreen Display Technology. Most recently, the General Dynamics Itronix GoBook VR-2, a next-generation semi-rugged notebook, was named Best Notebook of the Year in the Semi-Rugged category by LAPTOP Magazine in its December 2007 issue. -- Posted Friday, November 30, 2007

Full review: Juniper Systems Archer Field PC
If you're in need of an ultra-rugged Windows Mobile-based PDA, Juniper Systems of Logan, Utah, offers the Archer Field PC for applications in numerous vertical markets from agriculture to forestry to meter reading/data collection to wildlife resources and more. The Archer provides standard Windows CE functionality and excellent connectivity in a device so tough that it can be used in the most extreme working conditions. We put the Archer to the test and yes, that includes underwater and drops. [Read full review of the Juniper Systems Archer Field PC]

-- Posted Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Garmin stays with NAVTEQ, drops Tele Atlas takeover attempt
Garmin announced it has signed a six-year extension to its contract with NAVTEQ under which NAVTEQ provides digital map data for location based solutions and vehicle navigation. Garmin also announced that in light of this developments it does not intend to pursue its offer for Tele Atlas. Our take: Ok, let's recap: This past July TomTom wants to buy Tele Atlas for $2.4 billion. In October Nokia offers $8.1 billion to buy NAVTEQ. Upon that Garmin offers $3.3 billion for Tele Atlas, but TomTom ups that with $4.3 billion. Garmin makes nice with TomTom but TomTom apparently still wants to buy Tele Atlas. So both mapping companies may soon be owned by device makers. Not good. Maybe the US government which shoulders the entire cost for the GPS satellite system that makes mapping possible in the first place should get into the act. -- Posted Monday, November 19, 2007

LXE adds rugged lightweight MX8 handheld to lineup
LXE introduced the MX8 wireless data collection handheld. The MX8 is LXE’s smallest, lightest, and most economical handheld device to date, perfect for use in a wide array of light industrial and retail environments. With its choice of standard range laser or 1D/2D imagers. The MX8 is a Windows CE 5.0 device running a 520MHZ Marvell PXA280 processor, has superb battery life, a very bright 2.8-inch touchscreen, and enough ruggedness to easily survive in its intended applications in supply chain and retail. [See description and specs of the LXE MX8] -- Posted Friday, November 16, 2007

LG Philips develops dirt-resistant LCD
Smudges on LCD displays are not only unsightly, they can interfere with viewablity. And cleaning them off improperly may lead to damage with certain types of displays. There are smudge and dirt-resistant coatings that are applied on top of films, but that adds a costly step in the manufacturing process. LG.Philips LCD has now found a way to create a dirt-resistant LCD panel without that additional step. A LG.Pilips LCD representative said that the new panel "employs a principle similar to that used on non-stick frying pans. Dirt and oil can easily be wiped away." [See press release on the LG.Philips diret-resistant LCD notebook panel] -- Posted Thursday, November 15, 2007

How should ruggedness be tested and reported?
Most rugged handhelds, notebooks, and slates come with ruggedness specs. The specs are meant to provide potential customers with an idea of what kind of abuse a piece of equipment can handle. That is crucial information. But are the reported specs meaningful? Do they really help? And should we here at RuggedPCReview conduct our own tests, or should we treat evaluation equipment with kid gloves? We present our thoughts on Tests and reviews - how much punishment?. -- Posted Thursday, November 15, 2007

Microsoft releases Windows CE Embedded 6.0 R2
At the Embedded Technology 2007 conference in Japan, Microsoft announced the release of Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R2, designed to quickly build smart, connected, real-time commercial and consumer electronics devices. New features include the Web Services on Devices API, VoIP telephony and thin-client technology enhancements, and Windows Embedded CE 6.0 R2 seamlessly connects to computers running Vista and Windows Server 2008 as well as other devices. Microsoft also announced the launch of a community-focused initiative, code-named "SPARK," a joint offering between Microsoft and select hardware vendors designed to bring the benefits of embedded development on Windows Embedded CE 6.0 and Visual Studio 2005 to hobbyist developers and the academic community. [See what's new in Embedded CE 6.0 R2] -- Posted Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Added: downloadable PDFs of full reviews
One of the benefits available to our sponsors are print-style PDFs of full, detailed reviews of their products. We've now added direct access to those high-quality PDFs directly from the home page of (right-side column). Available ford viewing and download are: GETAC A790, GETAC M230, GETAC V100, GD-Itronix DynaVue , GD-Itronix MR1, GD-Itronix VR2, GD-Itronix XR1, MobileDemand T8600, MobileDemand T8600 update -- Posted Thursday, November 8, 2007

IR touchscreen with swipe & touch interface in Neonode N2
Touch technology has been used in rugged mobile devices for a very long time. Resistive touch technology is prevailing, the kind where you use a stylus. However, Apple's iPhone is now popularizing projected-capacity/multi-point touch as a very promising alternative, but even that is not all. A small Swedish company has adapted the IR touchscreen, prior used in POS terminals and ATMs, to very small screens. The company, Neonode, combines its IR touch screen (called zForce) with its special swipe-and-tap interface that sits on top of embedded Windows Mobile 6.0. We reviewed the new Neonode N2 multimedia phone and feel the technology itself may be of interest to RuggedPCReview readers. [Read full review of the Neonode N2] -- Posted Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Trimble/TDS Nomad now with digital camera and scanner
Trimble announced the availability of two Nomad rugged handheld computers: the 800LC and the 800LE. The Nomad 800LE comes with a fully integrated 2 megapixel digital camera and an integrated laser bar code scanner. The Nomad 800LC comes with the built-in digital camera only. Both models include integrated Bluetooth, 802.11, and GPS as well as 1 GB of internal data storage. [See our full review of the Trimble Nomad] -- Posted Monday, November 5, 2007

Pragma PocketVT SSH/telnet client now on Psion, LXE, Handheld Products
Pragma Systems, a provider of enterprise-class remote access and security software for Microsoft Windows and Windows Mobile added support across multiple manufacturers, including Psion Teklogix, LXE, Handheld Products, and NordicID to its PocketVT SSH/telnet client software for securing distribution, supply chain, order processing and other remote connectivity and management applications. PocketVT is a SSH and telnet client for handheld devices running Windows Mobile, Pocket PC and CE allowing command line access to remote computers which have an SSH or telnet server installed. Pragma's PocketVT can be deployed across Windows, Linux, Unix and Apple operating systems, and are typically used to run programs, check server status, remotely manage the enterprise environment. -- Posted Monday, November 5, 2007

Datalogic ships rugged Pegaso with expanded RAM, BT
Datalogic Mobile, a global player in the Rugged Mobile Computer market, announced the availability of the Datalogic Pegaso mobile computer with Bluetooth and 128 MB of RAM. The Pegaso, a PDA-style mobile computer runs Windows CE 5.0 on a 520MHz Marvell PXA270, has a full VGA display, provides excellent ruggedness with a durable overmold, IP64 sealing, and design that withstands multiple 5-foot drops to concrete. [See RuggedPCReview's analysis of the Datalogic Pegaso] -- Posted Thursday, November 1, 2007

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    The editor and co-founder of Pen Computing Magazine launched late 2005 as a website dedicated to providing news and information about rugged mobile computer technology and its applications. The site aims to be an industry clearinghouse for rugged computing equipment hardware reviews as well as an information source on rugged computing terminology, definitions, testing, and enabling technologies.

    "Over the many years that we have been testing and reviewing rugged mobile computers, and in our professional careers prior, we have noticed that there is very little standardization and that potential clients are often confused where and what to buy," said Dr. Conrad H. Blickenstorfer, Editor-in-Chief of and former CIO of the New York State Dormitory Authority. "We hope that our new service will answer many questions and provide all the answers a client needs to make an informed decision."