What is a Rugged Laptop? How It’s Different Than a Normal Laptop

Do you work in a harsh environment where your laptop might take a beating? Perhaps you’re an outdoor enthusiast who likes to take your work with you on the trail. In either case, you need a rugged laptop – one that can withstand the tough conditions you put it through. Not all laptops are created equal; regular laptops just won’t cut it in extreme environments. That’s why there’s such a thing as rugged laptops and ruggedized laptops – they’re built to be reliable and tough, no matter what kind of punishment they take.

Learn everything you need to know about what a rugged laptop is and how they’re different from a normal laptop in our guide. We’ll let you know how you know you need a rugged laptop, what features to look for in a rugged and ruggedized laptop and how to choose the best rugged laptop for tough jobs.

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So what is a rugged laptop? Let’s take a closer look.

Rugged laptops are designed for rough use. They can withstand strong vibrations, extreme temperatures and wet or dusty conditions – things that would damage a regular laptop beyond repair. That means they’re perfect for people who work in tough environments, such as construction workers, first responders, soldiers and more.

Types of rugged laptops

There are three main types of rugged laptops: rugged, semi-rugged and fully-rugged.

  • Rugged laptops are designed for use in harsh environments. They can withstand strong vibrations, extreme temperatures and wet or dusty conditions.
  • Semi-rugged laptops are designed for use in less harsh environments. They can withstand strong vibrations and some extreme temperatures, but they’re not as resistant to wet or dusty conditions.
  • Fully-rugged laptops are designed for use in any environment. They can withstand strong vibrations, extreme temperatures, wet or dusty conditions and more.

What is the lifespan of a rugged laptop?

Rugged laptops have a lifespan of about five years. That’s two to three times longer than a regular laptop.

Rugged laptops vs ruggedized laptops

There’s often confusion about the difference between rugged laptops and ruggedized laptops. Here’s a quick explanation:

Rugged laptops are designed from the ground up to be tough and durable. They’re built to withstand harsh conditions, such as strong vibrations, extreme temperatures and wet or dusty conditions.

Ruggedized laptops are regular laptops that have been modified to be more durable. They typically have a stronger casing and some reinforced components, but they’re not as tough as rugged laptops.

Typical industries that use rugged laptops

These are some typical industries that use rugged laptops::

  • Construction
  • Transportation
  • Environmental fieldwork
  • Manufacturing
  • Mining
  • Oil and gas exploration
  • Utilities
  • Warehousing and distribution

Individuals who use rugged laptops include:

  • First responders: Police officers, firefighters and other first responders need laptops that can withstand tough conditions, such as high temperatures, dust and more.
  • Outdoor enthusiasts: Hikers, campers and other outdoor enthusiasts need laptops that can withstand the elements, including rain, sun and more.
  • Soldiers: Soldiers need laptops that can withstand tough conditions, such as strong vibrations, extreme temperatures and wet or dusty conditions.
  • Field workers: Scientists, surveyors and other field workers need laptops that can withstand the elements, including rain, sun and more.
  • Construction workers: Construction workers need laptops that can withstand the rigors of a construction site, including vibrations, dust and more.
  • Transportation workers: Airlines, trucking companies and other transportation businesses rely on rugged laptops to help with logistics and communication. These devices must be able to withstand jostling and bumps during transport.
  • Scientists: Scientists need laptops that can withstand the elements, including rain, sun and more.
  • Factory workers: Factory workers need laptops that can withstand harsh conditions, such as high temperatures, dust and more.
  • Miners: Miners need laptops that can withstand the tough conditions of a mine, including dust, dirt and more.
  • Oil and gas workers: Workers in the oil and gas industry need laptops that can withstand extreme conditions, such as high temperatures and vibrations.
  • Utility workers: Electricians, plumbers and other utility workers need laptops that can withstand tough conditions, such as dust, dirt and more.
  • Warehouse workers: Workers in warehouses and distribution centers need a warehouse rugged tablet or laptop that can withstand jostling and bumps during transport.

Rugged laptops are also perfect for individuals who need a reliable device for their work or personal life. For example, photographers often need rugged laptops to store and edit their photos while they’re on the go.

Rugged laptops are made for a variety of conditions

  • Strong vibrations
  • Extreme temperatures
  • Water and other liquid immersion
  • Jostling and bumps
  • Dust and sand
  • Shock
  • Mud and dirt
  • Electromagnetic interference
  • Minimal size, weight and power

How do you know you need a rugged laptop?

There are a few signs that you might need a rugged laptop:

  • You work in a harsh environment: If you work in construction, transportation, manufacturing or another industry that has harsh conditions, then you might need a rugged laptop.
  • You do a lot of fieldwork: If you’re a scientist, surveyor or other type of field worker, then you might need a rugged laptop.
  • You enjoy the outdoors: If you’re an outdoor enthusiast, then you might need a rugged laptop.
  • Your regular laptop isn’t cutting it: If your regular laptop isn’t durable enough for your needs, then you might need a rugged laptop.

What features to look for in a rugged laptop

When shopping for a rugged laptop, there are a few key features to look for:

  • Durability: The most important feature of a rugged laptop is its durability. Look for laptops that are designed for tough conditions, such as high temperatures, dust, vibrations and more.
  • Weight: If you’ll be carrying your laptop with you often, you may want to choose a lighter model.
  • Ports: Make sure the laptop has the ports you need, such as USB, HDMI and more.
  • Battery life: Choose a laptop with a long battery life so you can stay productive even when there’s no outlet to be found.
  • Display: Choose a laptop with a bright, clear display that will be easy to see even in direct sunlight.
  • Keyboard: Make sure the keyboard is durable and easy to use, even when you’re wearing gloves.

Other features to explore:

  • A bright, sunlight-readable display
  • An integrated camera and microphone
  • A backlit keyboard
  • A fingerprint reader
  • An RFID reader
  • GPS and GLONASS capabilities
  • LTE connectivity
  • MIL-STD-810H and IP ratings.

MIL-STD-810H is a military standard that tests laptops for durability in harsh conditions, such as high temperatures, dust, vibrations and more. IP ratings are used to rate a laptop’s resistance to water and dust. The higher the IP rating, the more resistant the laptop is to water and dust.

How to choose the best rugged laptop to meet your needs

When it comes to choosing the best rugged laptop for you, it’s important to consider what features are most important to you. With so many different options on the market, you’re sure to find a laptop that’s perfect for your needs.

When choosing a rugged laptop, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Your needs: First, think about what you need a rugged laptop for. If you’ll be using it in harsh conditions, you’ll need a fully-rugged laptop. If you’ll be using it in less harsh conditions, a semi-rugged laptop will suffice.
  • Your budget: Rugged laptops can be expensive, so you’ll need to set a budget before you start shopping.
  • Your preferences: There are a variety of rugged laptops on the market, so you’ll need to decide what features are most important to you. For example, some laptops are lighter than others, so if you’ll be carrying your laptop with you often, you may want to choose a lighter model.
  • Find a reputable dealer: Rugged laptops are a significant investment, so you want to make sure you’re buying from a company that you can trust. You can trust Affinity Enterprises.

Is a rugged laptop worth the cost?

Rugged laptops are a significant investment, but they’re worth the cost if you need a durable, reliable laptop for harsh conditions. Rugged laptops are designed to withstand high temperatures, dust, vibrations and more, so you can rest assured that your laptop will be able to handle whatever you throw at it. If you work in a harsh environment or enjoy the outdoors, a rugged laptop is a good choice for you.

It’s time to start shopping

Now that you know everything there is to know about rugged laptops, it’s time to start shopping for one that meets your needs. Be sure to check out Affinity Enterprises’ complete line of rugged laptops. We partner with some of the best brands in the industry, such as Getac, Gamber Johnson, Havis, and Brother for premium quality hardware, mounting, and computer accessory solutions that fit the needs of your organization.

The laptops Affinity sells feature:

  • Dual batteries for limitless power in select models.
  • Brighter and stronger screens.
  • QuadraClear anti-reflection screen display.
  • Ultrafast 5G LTE.

Most importantly, our laptops can be used in rugged conditions and still perform optimally, whether it be freezing cold temperatures, dust storms, or an unexpected downpour.

Contact our experienced team today to discover how we can help meet your needs. We’ll work with you to find the perfect rugged laptop for your organization, and. Give us a call today at (800) 923-6846 or fill out our online form to get started.

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