By: H.I. Miller

We Drivers are often in the market for computers that will make our jobs more efficient and contribute to our leisure time. The three things that would help us are (1) a weather- and shock-resistent casing, (2) being able to write rather than type on an electronic notepad, and (3) being able to do the latter while wearing gloves or using a stylus, instead of a bare finger.

Just such an instrument is being showcased at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. For those who can’t make it to the event, here is what you aren’t getting to look at:

Panasonic’s new TOUGHPAD FZ-M1 is the latest in touch pad technology.

The highlights:

Windows 8.1 Pro 64-bit

4th-generation Intel Core Processor 1.6GHz with Turbo Boost up to 2.3GHz

Daylight readable, high sensitivity multi touch screen

8GB, expandable to 64GB

128/256gb solid state drives

720p web cam with mic

5MP rear camera with auto-focus and LED light

Optional integrated 4G LTE multi-carrier mobile broadband and GPS

Dual band wireless Wi-Fi

Bluetooth v4.0

USB 3.0 Port

Standard battery 4 hours; optional long-life 16 hours

Integrated option packages are available.

Dimensions: 7.98″ (L) x 5.20″ (W) x 0.71″ (H)

Weight: 1.2 lbs

A 20-inch version is also available for those of us who need a REALLY BIG screen.

The above features make this new Pad convenient for use in and out of the truck. A call to Best Buy confirmed it isn’t yet available in retail, so no price information was offered, but you can check it out at www.panasonic.com and search for the FZ-M1 Tablet.

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