In the world of business computing, mobility and durability are critical issues that are often linked, though they represent different challenges and value propositions. Dell Technologies has been at the forefront of durable, mobile computing for over a decade via its Latitude Rugged and Rugged Extreme product lines. The company’s recently announced Latitude 7030 Rugged Extreme Tablet, which follows on and complements last year’s Latitude 7230 Rugged Extreme Tablet, offers insights into Dell’s efforts to deliver solutions capable of surviving the most extreme conditions that businesses can imagine.
Mobility and durability: Similar and different
What similarities do mobility and durability have in computing devices, and how are they different? The first typically emphasizes form factor issues, including size, weight, and accessibility features. It also includes wireless technologies that ensure connectivity wherever workers are located, as well as accessories that make devices easy to use and simple to connect to other devices.
Durability is typically a thornier issue since it also impacts form factor design. For example, poorly designed solutions rugged enough to endure extreme weather and environmental conditions are often too heavy and awkward to work with comfortably. However, if a tablet or laptop is too light and flimsy, functionality and productivity are at risk. Those are especially vital points when workers are in remote locations, miles away from repair or maintenance facilities.
These issues are unfamiliar to consumers who can repair or replace dinged or broken smartphones, tablets, and laptops fairly easily. However, rugged computing solutions are vitally important to enterprises and other commercial organizations. As the “edges” of corporate networks have extended to virtually anywhere in the world that employees can travel, dependably durable mobile computing solutions are crucial for business success.
Dell’s Latitude 7030 Rugged Extreme Tablet
How does Dell’s new solution fit into these scenarios, and what does it offer that other Latitude Rugged Extreme solutions do not?
The 7030’s primary value propositions are size and lightness. In fact, Dell claims that the new solution is the world’s lightest fully rugged Windows tablet. How light? The 7030 clocks in at 2.24 pounds, or about the same weight as two #1 tall cans of tomatoes. That’s light enough to easily carry in a backpack or case, in a work vest, or park in a laptop/tablet pocket. Power solutions include a 36Whr internal battery and an optional dual hot-swappable battery setup that allows workers to use additional batteries as needed. Wireless connectivity options include Wi-Fi 6E, GPS, 5G, 5G Private Network, and 4G coming early next year.
According to Dell, the 7030 is designed for workers who spend most of their time away from a desk—on factory or manufacturing lines, in machine shops and maintenance facilities, and in remote oil fields, wind farms, and mining operations. The company also sees the 7030 as a companion to the larger and heavier 12-inch Latitude 7230 Rugged Extreme Tablet. According to Dell, rather than being connected to machinery or operating in a fixed spot on a factory floor, the 7030 offers all-day mobility and support for industrial tasks, like line equipment inspections.
How rugged is the Latitude 7030 Rugged Extreme Tablet? The new solution achieved IP-65 and MIL-STD 810H ratings, meaning that it was successfully drop-tested from up to four feet and temperature-tested from -20 F to 145 F. It also received an IP-65 rating for maximum protection from dust, dirt, and water intrusion, like those common in severe weather events.
You could also say that Dell “ruggedized” the 7030 to survive extreme virtual events, including cyber threats, via the company’s TPM 2.0 ControlVault, an integrated hardware-based encryption tool. In addition, the 7030 includes an infrared camera supporting Microsoft Windows Hello facial recognition, a touch fingerprint reader, camera privacy shutters, and a contact or contactless smartcard reader.
Along with up to 12th gen Intel Core i7 processors, up to 32 GB of LPDDR5 memory, and up to a 2TB NVMe SSD for storage, the 7030 offers accessories useful for supporting work- and industry-specific tasks. Those include Dell Active and Passive Pens for writing and drawing, a rigid handle with pen storage, a 360-degree rotating hand strap for comfortably carrying and using the tablet, and a sealed IP-65-rated Dell full-size keyboard and kickstand that can turn the 7030 into a 2-in-1.
According to Dell, the Latitude 7030 Rugged Extreme Tablet will be available globally in early December, with pricing announced closer to shipping.
What are the main takeaways from this latest addition to Dell’s Latitude Rugged Extreme portfolio? First and foremost, that the company continues to develop and deliver new solutions that meet enterprise customers’ essential needs while also complementing its other business solutions and services.
Like billions of consumers, millions of businesses worldwide recognize the value and importance of mobile computing. Unlike consumers, many companies require mobile solutions that are built to withstand extreme workplace and natural environments and severe weather conditions while reliably supporting critical business processes and tasks.
In the case of the new Latitude 7030 Rugged Extreme Tablet, Dell has created a solution that marries advanced lightness and portability to robust, reliable business productivity. Organizations with mobile employees who regularly work in remote areas and severe workplaces and natural environments would do well to consider Dell’s Latitude 7030 Rugged Extreme Tablets.
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