Dell Introduces Latitude Rugged Extreme Laptop Lineup

Dell is claiming an "industry first" with the upcoming launch of its first fully rugged convertible notebook that transforms into a tablet, the Dell Latitude 12 Rugged Extreme. This device joins the new Dell Latitude 14 Rugged Extreme notebook, which is built for performance. Both are designed to endure worst-case conditions, possibly even kids.

Dell revealed on Thursday that both solutions include impact-resistant ultra-polymers, sturdy magnesium alloy, sealed doors and compression gaskets. Fourth-generation QuadCool thermal management enables high performance at high temperatures, while a direct-view outdoor readable display enables productivity in harsh sunlight scenarios (like selling magic jumping beans in the desert).

"Latitude Rugged Extreme notebooks are independently tested to military standards including drops up to six feet, as well as ingress protection, emissions and hazardous materials certifications by a third-party testing facility," reads the PR. "No single field test accounts for every possible scenario, so the Dell Rugged Extreme portfolio is tested above and beyond every existing standard to verify survivability in real world situations."

The trick with the 12-inch model is that it has a hinge that allows the touch-enabled screen to flip all the way back so that the screen faces up and the keyboard faces down. The customized sealed "RGB" backlit keyboard on both models illuminates the keys in all lighting environments, but can go dark if the user must go incognito.

The company doesn't reveal the full list of specs, but does shine the light on a few highlights including up to 16 GB of memory and up to 512 GB of solid state storage. There's also a Full HD webcam with a privacy shutter, an 8MP camera on the 12-inch model, dual serial/RJ-45 on the 14-inch model, USB 3.0 and native serial on both.

According to Dell, both models also offer wireless capabilities including available mobile broadband and dedicated GPS. The 12-inch model has a battery lasting up to 8.5 hours; the 14-inch has a battery lasting up to 14 hours.

Pricing for the Latitude 12 Rugged Extreme convertible notebook will begin at $3,649 when the laptop becomes available on May 6th. The Latitude 14 Rugged Extreme will begin at $3,499 when it becomes available in mid-May.

  • JQB45
    I like the way it looks considering the purpose of the design.
  • vittau
    The Joker approves.
  • Christopher1
    Kids are not the biggest killer of laptops and tablets. Adults are. Adults get distracted by what their children are doing, forget that they have something in their hand when a kid is about to plop something on the floor and.... TSSSH! Busted laptop.Adults need to pay attention to what they are doing and sometimes allow children's messes to happen. Not worth it to break a 1000 dollar device to save 50 cents in milk.
  • danwat1234
    Industry first? The Panasonic Toughbook CF-18 and newest is CF-19, where the screen can flip so it can be a laptop or have a tablet style. Fully rugged IP65.The Toughbook uses it's magnesium alloy body to be the heatsink to cool the components so there are no vents. Does Dell employ the same thermal management techniques or doe Dell have one up on Panasonic?Discrete graphics?

    EDIT: looks like it uses a fan vs the Panasonic, so maybe it can handle higher end components without overheating and keep the battery cooler?
  • Blazer1985
    Chris, I can't really understand what is the meaning of your rant here. This is clearly no babysitting device. I really hope there will be as few kids as possible on the battlefield though...
  • Shodoman
    You sure the pricing is right? Shouldn't the 14" be more expensive?
  • randomstar
    Industry first? I have bought a number of the Dell XT2-ATG and similar ruggedized units for field techs and plumbers, A/C guys. yes older now - Core2 with SSD is plenty fast. It just seems like an update of the previous line.