Australia's largest telecommunications provider, Telstra, has selected the CF-18 Panasonic Toughbook to improve customer service, enhance the capabilities of field engineers and lower costs.
Telstra deploys 3,500 Panasonic Toughbooks
Telstra has deployed 3,500 Panasonic Toughbook CF-18 notebooks
to field engineers across the country in a multi-million dollar
deal. The Panasonic Toughbooks will be used to log and track daily
repairs and service requirements.
The Panasonic Toughbooks replace the incumbent pocket PC units
used by Telstra field engineers, providing them with increased
mobility, productivity and uptime in all environments and weather
conditions. Each Toughbook has ruggedised features designed to
prevent damage occurring in harsh outdoor working environments and
has a swivel LCD design that converts from a notebook to a rugged
touchscreen Tablet PC.
The Toughbooks are customised with an integrated CDMA1x modem
and Telstra software, enabling engineers to work effectively, even
in the most remote locations in Australia. Panasonic Toughbook
integration partner Marknet Technologies individually staged and
configured all units to Telstra requirements.
The roll-out represents the largest ever installation of
ruggedised notebooks in the Australian telecommunications
Prior to selecting the Panasonic Toughbooks, Telstra conducted a
detailed needs analysis to determine the organisation's precise
requirements. During this process, hardware solutions from several
major vendors were assessed against key selection criteria. One of
these criteria was total cost of ownership (TCO) - an area in which
the Toughbook was judged to have particular strengths over
competitors. A low TCO delivered through the ruggedised Toughbook's
superior all-environment operational capabilities led Telstra to
select it as the most suitable solution for their field
Commenting on the decision by Telstra to select the Toughbook
CF-18, Steve Hall, Group Manager, Toughbook, Panasonic Australia
said: "This solution strongly supports Telstra's commitment to
customer service. Interruptions to engineers' work schedules caused
by computer-related issues in the field can have an enormous
impact, and we believe that using a ruggedised solution instead of
standard notebooks will reduce this by as much as 90 per cent.
"In calculating the TCO of Panasonic's Toughbook, Telstra took
into account all costs incurred when a unit fails in the field.
These included human resources needed, the replacement unit cost,
the turnaround time for re-configuration and return to the field
and most importantly, the potential effect on customer service
levels due to the engineer's downtime. After conducting analysis
along these lines, the Toughbook CF-18 was a clear winner.
"Panasonic's Toughbooks are designed specifically to endure
harsh outdoor working environments, in conditions that are beyond
the capabilities of normal laptops. That is why they are used by
the military, telecommunications companies and utilities
worldwide," Steve Hall said. According to Alan Olden, Head of Metro
Service, Telstra, "Panasonic's Toughbook is a hardware solution
that will enhance the capabilities of Telstra's field engineers for
a significantly longer period of time than a standard laptop or