April 2015

Honeywell releases Dolphin 75e rugged handheld with either Windows Embedded 8.1 Handheld or Android 4.4
Honeywell Scanning & Mobility released the Dolphin 75e rugged handheld as the first of a next-generation of products running either Windows Embedded 8.1/10 Handheld or Android 4.4/5.0. Based on the powerful 2.26GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor, the Dolphin 75e uses capacitive multi-touch on its 4.3 inch display, has five sensors, a dedicated 1D/2D imager, fast 802.11ac WiFi, dual high-res cameras, and Voice over IP. [See description, analysis and specs of the Honeywell Dolphin 75e] -- Posted Thursday, April 30, 2015 by chb

IDC: Samsung reasserts global smartphone shipment lead with focus on lower-cost models in 1Q2015
According to the International Data Corporation (IDC), vendors shipped a total of 336.5 million smartphones worldwide in 1Q2015, up 16.7% from the 288.5 million units in 1Q14 but down by 10.9% from 377.5 million in 4Q14. In the overall mobile phone market (smartphones plus feature phones), vendors shipped 458.9 million units worldwide, flat from the 459.3 million units shipped in 1Q14. Samsung led in smartphone markets share with 24.5%, followed by Apple with 18.2%. Lenovo, Huawei and LG Electronics fill the top 5, each with about 5% share. [See IDC media release] -- Posted Wednesday, April 29, 2015 by chb

Full review: innovative, affordable MobileDemand xTablet Flex 8
With their new xTablet Flex 8 8-inch tablet, MobileDemand breaks new ground by combining a modern, competent Intel Bay Trail-powered Windows 8.1 tablet with a specially designed and preinstalled case that provides very respectable ruggedness. The whole package, including the industrial-grade briefcase carrying handle and heavy duty handstrap costs less than an iPad mini 3! Yet, the 1.6 pound tablet's specs are impressive. Quad-core Z3775 CPU, 4GB RAM, 64GB storage, 10-point capacitive multi-touch, and a 1280 x 800 pixel IPS display. [See full review of the MobileDemand xTablet Flex 8] -- Posted Tuesday, April 28, 2015 by chb

Scottish ambulance service to use 1200 Getac T800 rugged tablets for emergency operations
Getac reports that the Scottish Ambulance Service has signed a deal with leading ICT supplier Terrafix to use Getac’s T800 fully rugged thin and light Windows 8.1 tablets within its fleet of emergency vehicles. Each ambulance will be equipped with two tablets - one for use in the front of the vehicle for mobilisation and routing, and the other positioned in the rear of the vehicle, but remaining portable to be used as a method of recording Electronic Patient Report Forms. [See media release] -- Posted Wednesday, April 22, 2015 by chb

Xplore Technologies acquires Motion -- How it came about
Today I listened to the full Investor Call broadcast Xplore held on April 16 about its acquisition of Motion Computing, and a lot of things are clearer now (listen to it here). So here's a more complete picture of what happened. [...read more] -- Posted Friday, April 17, 2015 by chb

Xplore Technologies to acquire Motion Computing
Two pioneers in rugged mobile tablet computing are joining forces as Xplore Technologies announced it has agreed to acquire Motion Computing. Xplore has been a driving force in ultra-rugged tablets since 1996, Motion burst on the market in 2001 as a primary provider of enterprise and healthcare market tablets. Both have recently expanded their offerings with complementary tablet products. Xplore (fiscal 2014 revenues of $36 million) and Motion (unaudited fiscal 2014 revenues of $83 million) are both headquartered in Austin, Texas, within ten miles of each other. “Nearly fifty percent of Motion revenue comes from outside the United States,” said Mark Holleran, president and COO of Xplore. “Leveraging the mature distribution channels that Motion has developed over the last 10 years, Xplore will significantly expand its international reach. “Motion is excited about what this combination brings to its customers and business partners,” said Peter Poulin, CEO of Motion. “The capital backing of Xplore supports a robust product pipeline and customer service capabilities that are critical to enterprises with whom Motion has had long standing relationships.” RuggedPCReview wishes the combined companies luck and success. [See press release] -- Posted Thursday, April 16, 2015 by chb

Xplore Technologies acquires Motion -- What it means
On April 16, 2015, Xplore Technologies and Motion Computing announced that Xplore was acquiring Motion. This was not a total surprise as both companies are in the rugged tablet computer market, both are pioneers in tablets, and both are located within ten miles from each other in Austin, Texas. And yet, the announcement came as a surprise to me. [... read more] -- Posted Thursday, April 16, 2015 by chb

Panasonic 4K Toughpad receives updates, much lower price
While most users consider 10-inch tablets the norm, Panasonic's Toughpad 4K tablet, initially launched in 2013, has a 20-inch screen. That means four times the display real estate. Better yet, the display offers 4k resolution, 3840 x 2560 pixel! But while everyone loved the razor-sharp display, few liked the $5,999 price tag. That's changed now. Panasonic introduced a much appreciated update that includes a switch from 3rd gen to 5th gen Core processors, HDMI 2.0, and, best of all, a much lower price. The updated Panasonic Toughpad 4k, which has a magnesium alloy frame enclosed in a reinforced glass fiber case, will cost US$2,999 when it becomes available in July. [See Panasonic media release] -- Posted Monday, April 13, 2015 by chb

Full review: 2nd generation Handheld Group Algiz 10X
The Handheld Group gave its ultra-rugged 10.1-inch Algiz 10X Windows tablet a significant technology upgrade that includes a quad-core Intel Celeron N2930 processor with integrated Intel HD Graphics and ancillary technology, much faster wireless, USB 3.0, and a much better display. RuggedPCReview tested the 2nd gen Algiz 10X and found an overall 2X performance improvement as well as better battery life. [See full review of the Handheld Group Algiz 10X] -- Posted Saturday, April 11, 2015 by chb

Windows 7 still leads by a very wide margin
According to Net Applications, Windows 7 continues to rule the desktop with a 58% marketshare. In second place, surprisingly, remains the by now ancient Windows XP with 17%, solidly ahead of Windows 8.1 with 10.6%. No other major Windows or Mac OS release even reached 4%. [See Net Applications Desktop OS Market Share] -- Posted Thursday, April 2, 2015 by chb