Panasonic works with Sierra Wireless to offer Qualcomm's Gobi2000™ technology on Toughbook mobile computers

Mobile Broadband Technology Delivers Greater Flexibility and Performance to Mobile Workforce
Secaucus, NJ-March 24, 2010

Panasonic Computer Solutions Company, manufacturer of durable, reliable Panasonic Toughbook® mobile computers, today announced it would deploy Gobi2000™ technology across its line of rugged mobile computers. Toughbook mobile computers featuring the upgraded multi-mode Gobi2000 solution can take advantage of increased global connectivity options, faster data-transfer rates and integrated GPS. The company will deploy the latest Qualcomm Gobi technology with the help of Sierra Wireless.

“The move to Gobi2000 technology is indicative of our continued effort to provide the best mobile broadband experience to our customers,” said Victoria Obenshain, director, wireless strategy, Panasonic Computer Solutions Company. “For our customers, consistent Internet access is a business necessity. The Gobi2000 solution is the top global mobile Internet solution and maximizes productivity for our customers.”

With Gobi2000-enabled Toughbook computers, mobile workers benefit from the high-speed data capabilities of leading network operators in virtually all parts of the world, while IT managers can streamline their operations by leveraging a single hardware and software solution for all of their nationwide and global branch office locations.

The combination of the embedded Gobi2000 solution and Panasonic's Carrier Selection Application software enables Toughbook laptops to operate on both CDMA2000 and WCDMA (UMTS) wireless networks and allows seamless network selection within a single device. Gobi's software-defined modem saves IT managers from having to physically remove notebooks from the field to make changes, which simplifies operations and management of field assets and helps maintain business continuity. Should a network change become necessary, Panasonic's connection manager software's intuitive "point-and-click" interface enables field workers to connect seamlessly to new mobile broadband networks in geographic areas where their usual wireless service provider might not offer coverage.

“Having ‘always-on’ connectivity gives enterprises a significant advantage in their mobile workers’ productivity and workplace efficiency,” said Barry Matsumori, vice president of product management for Qualcomm CDMA Technologies. “We are delighted to be working with Panasonic and Sierra to bring next-generation Gobi2000 technology to Toughbook users.”

Panasonic will offer Gobi2000 technology across its line of Toughbook mobile computers. Devices that will feature embedded Gobi2000 mobile broadband include the Toughbook 30, 19, U1, H1 Health, H1 Field, 52 and C1. Other models will be announced later in the year. Panasonic will continue to offer a range of other wireless connectivity options for its Toughbook line, including 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth® 2.1.

Sierra Wireless provides the module, a Gobi support interface and professional services including integration, testing and certification support for Panasonic.  The company has a track record of leading the way with new wireless technology and solutions, and focuses on wireless devices and applications. With sales, engineering, and research and development teams located in offices around the world, Sierra Wireless offers a network of experts in mobile broadband and M2M integration to support customers worldwide.

“Sierra Wireless has been working with Panasonic for many years, integrating reliable, high quality wide area wireless connectivity in their devices and offering professional services to support their go-to-market requirements,” said Mike Ardelan, vice president, North American OEM sales, Sierra Wireless.  “We value our collaboration with Panasonic and look forward to providing their mobile customers with integrated broadband connections that allow them to work from wherever they are.”

Follow the Toughbook Brand
The Panasonic Toughbook brand can be followed on various social media channels, including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr and Toughbloggers.com. 

Gobi is a trademark of Qualcomm Incorporated.

About Sierra Wireless
Sierra Wireless (NASDAQ: SWIR – TSX: SW) is expanding the wireless world with a comprehensive offering of hardware, software, and connected services for mobile lifestyles and machine-to-machine communications. Our customers count on us to help them succeed with early access to new wireless technologies and innovative, reliable, high-performing solutions for a broad range of applications. For more information about Sierra Wireless, visit www.sierrawireless.com.  

About Panasonic Computer Solutions Company
Panasonic Computer Solutions Company empowers the mobile workforce. The company is a unit of Panasonic Corporation of North America, which is the principal North American subsidiary of Panasonic Corporation (NYSE: PC). Panasonic has delivered reliable, durable mobile solutions through its Toughbook® line of notebook computers since1993 and has expanded the boundaries of wireless communications technology through a broad portfolio of products, ranging from fully rugged, industrial strength notebook computers and tablet PCs to business-rugged thin-and-light and ultraportable notebooks. A core manufacturer, Panasonic controls the entire process of design, manufacture, quality assurance, service and support. As a result, Panasonic Toughbook computers are known for having the lowest failure rates in the industry. Government, industrial, and commercial users—from Fortune 1,000 companies to small businesses—rely on solutions from Panasonic, wherever their work takes them.

All brand and company/product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of the respective companies. All specifications are subject to change without notice. Information on Panasonic’s full line of notebook PCs for the mobile professional can be obtained by calling 800-662-3537 or at http://www.toughbook.com.


Contact:
Chip Dehnert, Cohn & Wolfe
for Panasonic Computer Solutions Company
+1 (415) 365-8533 direct
chip.dehnert@cohnwolfe.com
Toughbook-PRTeam@cohnwolfe.com