Northern Ireland Water equips 500 field engineers with Panasonic Toughpads

Predicts improved mobile working from Panasonic Toughpad FZ-G1 rugged tablets

BRACKNELL, UK. Jun 3, 2014 -- Northern Ireland Water is equipping its 500 field engineers with Panasonic Toughpad FZ-G1 tablets to improve mobile working and enhance productivity. The devices will be integrated into the company's fleet of 500 vehicles, made up of some 19 different models.

The new Toughpad tablets will replace the mobile workforce's existing Panasonic CF-19 Toughbook rugged laptops, which have been in use since 2007. The new rugged tablets were chosen after a rigorous selection process. A shortlist of devices were tested and evaluated by Northern Ireland Water staff at open days, before pilot testing and final evaluation.

"Screen size and daylight visibility, IP rating and the ruggedised nature of the device were all important considerations, along with usability and 3G communications capability," said Brendan McMenamin, IT Service Manager for Northern Ireland Water. "Our field engineers are often working in remote areas of the countryside and connectivity is essential for effective working. The Panasonic FZ-G1 Toughpad scored highest at the open days, pilot sessions and communications test, where we measured 3G connectivity at 16 different locations across Northern Ireland."

The Panasonic Toughpads with Windows 8.1 Pro operating systems will be equipped with mobile work management, route optimisation and GIS map applications as well as specialist leak detection and pressure and flow measurement applications for use in the field.

The Toughpad FZ-G1 is Panasonic's first fully rugged Windows 8 Pro tablet which has been designed for mobile workers who spend much of their time working outside or from vehicles. The thin and lightweight device, weighing only 1.1kg, has been designed to take full advantage of the new functionality offered by the Windows 8 Pro operating system and offers two-way touch input with its capacitive 10.1" multi-touch screen and digitiser pen for tasks such as recording signatures.

The first fully rugged device to use the latest IPSα Panel technology, developed by Panasonic, the FZ-G1 provides new levels of viewing quality for tablet users working outside. Offering extra wide viewing angles, strengthened glass, high contrast ratio and 800cd/m2 high brightness paired with a Panasonic anti-reflection layer, the 10.1" Full HD (1920x1200) resolution screen is purpose built to perform in any light conditions.

"The Toughpad FZ-G1 sets a new benchmark for outdoor screen visibility and usability with the latest features of Windows 8 Pro," said Paul Davidson, Corporate Sales Manager for Utility, Telco & Oil at Panasonic Computer Product Solutions. "With these devices, Northern Ireland Water's mobile workers will experience the new freedom of fully integrated workflows."


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