The world’s most rugged tablet comes at a high price

by David Needle

April 22 2014

The XC6 Windows tablet is Xplore's latest "ultra-rugged" tablet.
The XC6 Windows tablet is Xplore's latest "ultra-rugged" tablet.

Xplore has taken its “world’s most rugged tablet” line to a higher level with today’s introduction of the XC6 series.

The XC6 Windows tablet is a successor to the company’s iX104 ultra-rugged tablets, adding double the performance, a 30% improvement in readability in sunlight and in battery life.

Customers can get it pre-loaded with either the WIndows 8.1 or Windows 7 Pro operating system.

How tough is it? Xplore doesn’t mince words:

“No matter if it’s the middle of the desert or in freezing rain, this tablet is going to excel in extreme conditions, resulting in a longer lifecycle and higher return on investment for our customers,” said Mark Holleran, Xplore’s President and COO.

While the XC6 is priced at a whopping $5,299, that’s actually the same as its predecessor that has found a ready niche in the military, field service such as oil fields and other extreme environments.

“It’s a pretty extreme product, it’s not for everybody,” Xplore’s VP of Marketing, John Costello, tells Tabtimes. “But for the military and other markets that need this kind of performance, it meets or exceeds their requirements.”

Costello says the price isn’t a major issue for Xplore’s customers when an ultra-rugged mobile solution is required. “Price is not the first thing they bring up, in it’s down there on the list and for some it’s not even in the conversation,” says Costello. “These are going to environments where people’s lives are in jeopardy, and companies won’t penny pinch on that.”

(Unlike off-the-shelf tablets, ruggedized devices come with their own lexicon and rating criteria. Download this whitepaper to help you navigate the terms and acronyms so you can make informed decisions.)

The specs

Xplore says third-party testing shows the XC6 goes beyond typical industry MIL-STD-810G rugged testing requirements including a seven-foot drop rating. Certified water and dust proof, the XC6 is equipped with a fourth generation Intel Core i5 processor, 4G LTE communications capabilities, and offers up to 256GB.

With a 30% increase in battery life, the XC6 can run continuously for 8 1/2 hours, which could translate to 9 1/2 to 10 hours if it’s put to sleep during lunch and breaks. 

How tablets can replace notebook computers and mobile security and management issues will be among the key topics at the Tablet Strategy conference on May 6, 2014 in New York. You may be eligible for a free pass if you qualify as a Tablet/Mobile Manager. If you don't qualify, there are still a few tickets available at $175 each, breakfast and lunch included. Check conditions and register on the registration page.)

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