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Panasonic release reasonably priced Toughpad FZ-M1 for the budget-conscious buyer

Panasonic has announced that they will producing a new “value” edition of its Toughpad FZ-M1 Windows 8.1 tablet, for the clumsy businesses and professionals that require a rugged but still professional looking tablet, whilst keeping the price down.

The 7-inch tablet has a dual-core Intel Celeron N2807 processor rather than the Core i5 vPro in the fully fledged version. However, the new chipset offers long battery life and is suited to mobile devices.

The super strong device comes with 2GB of RAM (4GB optional) and a 128GB solid state drive. The tablet is fanless and weighs 540g. It also comes packed with IP65 protection meaning it will function in a sandstorm or a thunderstorm and anywhere in between, it is 18mm thin. And the LCD screen has a resolution of 1280 x 800.

Other configurable options include 4G mobile broadband, GPS and vehicle pass through antenna. A business expansion module can add True Serial, LAN, NFC, a smartcard reader, 1D/2D barcode reader, UHF RFID (Ultra High Frequency Radio Frequency Identification) and battery hot swap capabilities. An 8-megapixel rear camera can also be added – there’s a 2-megapixel front-facing webcam built-in.

See also: Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 10.1 leaks

It already includes a full size USB 3.0 port, microSD card slot, headset and microSIM slot. Battery life is claimed to last up to eight hours.

If this all seems a bit excessive for a tablet there’s a good reason for this; Panasonic originally designed this tablet with Becrypt to meet the security requirments of the MOD and other security conscious markets. Essentially the device was designed for use by soldiers in theatre, so there should be no fear of it not being able to survive our mundane lives.

The Panasonic Toughpad FZ-M1 Value will be available from June for £739.

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