Intersil PRISM Chip Set Meets One Tough Notebook

Intersil announced today that the Panasonic MDWD, or Mobile Data Wireless Display and its companion Panasonic Toughbook 07 Mini-PC will incorporate the Intersil PRISM WLAN chip set. The two units are ruggedized for use in harsh environments like factory floors or police patrol cars.

Panasonic Computer Solutions Company reported that it has begun taking orders for the PC but did not mention pricing. Matsushita, Panasonic’s parent company, claimed to have 60 percent of the market for ruggedized notebooks used by police forces in the US already. Officers on motorcycles will be able to carry the MDWD to vehicles for instant data access.

The MDWD uses a wireless touch-screen LCD, useful up to 300 ft. from the PC body. The display features SVGA resolution of 800 x 600 and is transflective to assist use in bright sunlight. It also incorporates support for 802.11b wireless local area networking. The display, which is shock and drop resistant, incorporates its own 8 MB of SDRAM to prevent disruption if the wireless connection is temporarily disrupted. It comes in at less than 2 lbs., is 8.75″ wide, 6.4″ high, and .5″ deep. Panasonic stated that battery life for the display is around 5 hours without backlight and 2.5 hours with it constantly in use.

The Toughbook 07 Mini-PC body runs on a 300 MHz Pentium III processor, has a 5 GB hard drive and 64 MB RAM. Dimensions are 7.9″ wide, 2″ high, and 3.6″ deep with less than 2.5 lbs weight. The body battery lasts approximately 4 hours. There is a built-in PC card slot for wired connectivity options.

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