Targetted at businesses, Panasonic’s new Toughbook 55 marks a turning point in its 22 years. Stubbornly eschewing the thin-and-light trend, the Toughbook 55 instead allows for modular add-ons in addition to a full suite of I/O along with other customisable hardware.

The Toughbook 55 comes with a collapsible carrying handle for portability. Image: Ian Ling

With an Ingress Protection rating of IP53, the Toughbook 55 safeguards the device against dust and water splashes, along with drops of up to 91cm with its MIL-STD810H rating. This makes Panasonic’s Toughbook truly tough, capable also of withstanding temperatures from between -20 and +60 celcius

Headlining the Toughbook 55 is a suite of modular expansion slots. On the left side, a DVD/Blu-Ray reader that can also accommodate an additional SSD, a front expansion tray that accommodates an additional fingerprint reader, RFID or regular smart card reader, or an additional secondary battery.

Some of the expansion units that fit into the three slots on the Toughbook 55. These include DVD disc reader, smart card scanner, and additional port tray. Image: Ian Ling

It also supports a removable main SSD card for high-security demands, along with easily upgradable RAM up to 64GB accessible via dedicated compartment.  

On board is a full suite of I/O like a HDMI port, LAN port, micro SDXC slot and two USB 3.1 ports and one USB 3.1 type C PD port, with an optional Dual Path Through interface.

Capable hardware on the Toughbook 55 include an option for a quad mic array that allows for a 98% voice recognition rate even in noisy situations like in a vehicle or in manufacturing facilities. This is aided by improved stereo speakers that offer up to 92 dBA of volume, along with an optional 2MP front camera with IR capabilities with IR and privacy shutter for video conferencing.

For added convenience, the Toughbook 55 also comes with 10-finger touch sensitivity with the ability to operate with gloves on, and stylus compatibility for precise writing and operation. Designed to be used in multiple scenarios, the Toughbook also boasts a peak brightness of 1000 cd/m2.

Powering the Toughbook 55 is an 8th generation Intel Core i5 vPro processor, with Windows 10 Pro. Designed with resistance against firmware, BIOS-phase and other device attacks, Toughbook 55 also supports Windows Hello facial recognition security alongside optional and expandable fingerprint reader, smart card reader, contactless smart card reader.

The Toughbook 55 supports Bluetooth 5.0, along with WLAN and Intel Dual Band Wireless AC-9560, and has Global Positioning support for Galileo, GPS, GLONASS and Beidou.

With an option for HD, Full-HD and Full-HD with Touch Screen variants, the 14″ Toughbook 55 will start at USD 2,400 and will be available in Singapore starting today 21 November 2019. Upon purchase, users can choose three additional ports on the device with an option for VGA and True Serial, as well as a 4th USB, 2nd GLAD or a Rugged USB 2.0 port.

Ian Ling
Ian is the resident Tech Monkey and Head of Content at VR Zone. His training in Economics and Political Science is at the basis of his love for journalism and storytelling. A photographer by passion, and an audiophile by obsession, Ian is captivated by all forms of tech that makes enthusiasts tick.

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