Tokyo (Japan) - Matsushita, commonly known in the US for its Panasonic brand, is introducing a new waterproof notebook in Japan. The Let's Note CF-Y5 has a waterproof sheet and drainage ducts that protect it from spills and light rain. In addition, it can withstand up to 220 pounds of force.
Semi-rugged and fully rugged notebooks have been sold to the military for several years, in locations around the world. Panasonic Toughbooks and the Itronix GoBooks have held much of this market, but many other smaller manufacturers also sell similar computers. At the 2004 Computex trade show in Taiwan, Tom's Hardware Guide editors dropped objects and poured water on a rugged Amrel laptop. You can read about it and watch the video here.
The CF-Y5 will be available in Japan on May 19 for $2,000. There is no word yet on availability in North America.