Panasonic has a new ultraportable Toughbook heading your way in September, ideal for work in the hostile wilderness, construction sites, the battlefield or a even a particularly nasty boardroom. The new 12.1-inch Panasonic Toughbook S10 weighs just 3 pounds and still manages to sport a DVD drive. The new 13-inch MacBook Air, by comparison, weighs in at 2.96 pounds and the 12.1-inch Lenovo X220 tips the scales around 3.3 pounds--both sans optical drive. Panasonic says the S10's battery provides 12.5 hours of battery life, but, as always, don't take that claim to the bank until it's been verified by independent tests.
Under the hood, the Panasonic S10 has a 2.5GHz Sandy Bridge Intel Core i5-2520M, 320GB hard 5400 rpm hard drive, 4 or 8 GB RAM, 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR and a 3G mobile broadband option. The new laptop includes one USB 3.0 port, two USB 2.0, an SDXC card reader, VGA and HDMI external display ports. The S10 has a 12.1-inch LCD display with 1280-by-800 WXGA resolution and runs your choice of 32- or 64-bit Windows 7 Professional.
If you plan to punish your laptop, Panasonic says the S10 can withstand a 2.5-foot drop when running (as long as it lands on its base) and a 1 foot drop from 26 different impact points, as long as the device is turned off. The S10 can also resist up to 6 ounces of liquid without drowning and 220 pounds of compression (a handy feature if your laptop ends up under the sofa at your next family get-together).
For the security conscious, the S10 includes a host of options such as a fingerprint reader, Computrace theft protection agent built into the computer's BIOS, Trusted platform module chip v1.2 and a cable lock slot.
The S10 will be available in September for a suggested retail price of $2450.