Rugged computers are designed to operate under harsh environments such as extreme temperatures, wet conditions, strong vibrations etc. Ruggedized industrial computers have same design to withstand robust conditions but their operation may different according to industry and condition. There are three types of rugged computers.
• Rugged Laptops
These are tough versions of home laptops. Laptops are used because of their portability and self-contained unit. Under one unit a screen, keyboard, mouse, and efficient battery is assembled. There are generally three type of rugged laptops business, semi-rugged and fully rugged. All rugged laptops have magnesium casing and carry shock-mounted hard disk drives. Semi and fully rugged laptops are completely sealed to keep out rain, dust, fog, wind, sand, cold and hot temperature, salt water, and humidity. Heat generated in the system is cleverly channeled to make into a heat sink.
• Rugged Tablet PC
Similar to laptops, it has magnesium casing, shock-mounted hard disk drives and sealed to keep out harmful elements. Those who are involved in data collection or form completions use tablet PCs. They can handled while on the move on bumpy roads or rough terrain. Day-viewable screen which is either standard or better upgrade options are also available. Information collected need not be re-entered into the computer, hence it saves time and eliminates any transcription errors. Most of the delivery services use these tablets to collect signature of the recipients.
• Rugged handheld
Much like our mobile phones, these are designed to be carried in one hand but under tough conditions. They are mostly like PDA. The size is one fourth of the computer. Some handheld computers do not have general keypad but they do use number keypad. Much like ruggedized industrial computers it is also sealed from all elements, protected from vibrations and shocks. They can be used as cellular phone with broadband network connectivity. Operating system used is also scaled down for a mobile platforms.