Panasonic unveils new fully rugged clamshell TOUGHBOOK 40

The TOUGHBOOK 40 is a major upgrade of the old TOUGHBOOK 31, with the addition of new features like eight new modular areas.

Panasonic TOUGHBOOK 40

Today, the Panasonic Enterprise Solutions Division of Panasonic Canada is announcing the launch of the TOUGHBOOK 40, a fully-rugged, modular clamshell laptop that is a renewal and updating of the former TOUGHBOOK 31.  A key addition over the older model is eight new modular areas designed to extend the devices’ lives in the field on each use.

“We’ve been in the hardware game for rugged mobility for 20 plus years and have  brought in software partnerships and services on top of that,” said Logan Stewart, Group Manager, Product Management & Marketing at Panasonic Canada. “The TOUGHBOOK 40 is an updating and reworking of our former TOUGHBOOK 31, which was also a fully rugged clamshell model. This brings that back.”

Stewart indicated that the TOUGHBOOK 40 had been in design and development for some time.

“We have been developing this for a couple of years,” he said. The TOUGHBOOK 31 was in the market for a very long time, so we wanted for the next version to put something in that will be similarly popular,” Stewart said.

Compared to its predecessor, the TOUGHBOOK 40, with its magnesium alloy body, is over a pound lighter, and has a larger 14’’ FHD touchscreen display with a 1200 NIT display for better readability and usability.

“The TOUGHBOOK 40’s number #1 innovation is, however, the eight new modular areas, which are designed to allow the device to stay in the field as much as possible. Rather than just provide the customer with spares, we want them to have as good an experience as possible, and we believe that is best attained by keeping them in the field as long as possible.”

The Panasonic TOUGHBOOK 40, open, with modules visible

The eight modular areas include battery, memory, storage, keyboard and four expansion (xPAK) areas. The Left Expansion Area is for a DVD, a Blue Ray smart card reader or an SSD. The Right Expansion is for either a Smart Card or a second battery option, giving 18 more hours of battery life for a total of 36. The Rear Expansion Area is for IO Ports, while the Palm Rest Expansion Area supports fingerprint readers.

The TOUGHBOOK 40 comes with 11th Gen Intel vPro processors, available in i5 or i7 formats, with optional AMD dedicated graphics or Intel Iris Xe Graphics. To support the increased use of video conferencing, the TOUGHBOOK 40 also has the first 5MP webcam in its class. It also supports both 4G and 5G connectivity options. Rugged certifications include 6’ Drop, MIL-STD-810H, MIL-STD-461H, C1D2 and IP66. It comes with 16GB of DDR RAM, which can scale up to 64GB. 512GB of NVMe main storage is standard, but that can be upgraded, to 2 TB.

The market for the TOUGHBOOK 40 is basically the same as its predecessor – emergency service professionals, military and police officers.

“We expect that it will be very popular with public safety, including police,” Stewart said.

Stewart indicated as well that they see the lifespan of these devices as consistent with their predecessors.

“We don’t see deployment cycles shortening,” he said. “Four to five years minimum is what customers want now.”