The best rugged computers for GIS operations

handheld nautiz x8 with expansion cap
The Handheld Nautiz X8 is an ideal rugged handheld for GIS applications still supporting WEH.

The best Windows handheld

If you prefer a rugged handheld running Windows instead, the options are quite limited since Microsoft announced that they’ll discontinue support for WEH (Windows Embedded Handheld) in January 2020.

However, many companies have already configured customized software for the operating system which kind of ties them to it. Luckily, Handheld Group has committed the availability of the WEH 6.5 OS for the Handheld Nautiz X8 until at least the end of 2021.

And the Nautiz X8 is actually a really good fit for GIS-related tasks. Besides being powered by a 5200 mAh battery lasting 12 hours on a single charge, it’s IP67-rated, MIL-810-STD tested and comes with a sunlight-readable 4.7-inch display.

But the really standout feature for this device is its wide range of accessories. Except for pole mounts, carry cases, and holders the Nautiz X8 brings versatility with several expansions. The LRBT expansion cap features an u-blox module that allows long-range communication up to 300 meters – perfect for advanced forestry and surveying challenges.

Learn more about the Handheld Nautiz X8.