A software house develops an application for a 7″ tablet computer. The users want a cheap reliable tablet and a tablet is sourced. The problem lies in the word “cheap”. A cheap tablet can still be somewhat reliable depending on use and with the hundreds of budget tablets flooding the market there will be some.
A cheap tablet means a consumer grade tablet, and with consumer grade items means a limited product life span. Technology is quickly progressing in the tablet and smartphone markets. Upgraded processors are regularly released and internal parts like cameras, NFC, storage, speakers frequently upgraded.
How Long Will My Device Be Available ?
Manufacturers of consumer devices make no commitment to the lifespan of a product. Take for iPhone 6 & 6s for example. Images and specs of the iPhone 7 were leaked soon after the 6 was released. A manufacturer will deem the product a viable option in the consumer marketplace until competition means the unit will need to upgraded or replaced. This could be a 1 year cycle, sometime more, sometimes less.
Enterprise grade mobile devices look at this issue from the other side. Devices are built for a purpose be it warehouse scanning, field service or another vertical. Maintenance contracts can be bought for the units extending their lifespan, plus spares will be available for several years afterwards.
Whereas consumer units are usually on break and replace pair, enterprise units are based on a break fix repair. And that cycle is getting shorter and shorter.
Touching on the software briefly, if a device is changed it is possible the software will need to be altered. Customers are less likely to remain loyal should they need to buy a new tablet each year to continue using the software.
Selecting a cheap tablet has its advantages for cost, there are better alternatives to ensure long term solutions.
A smartphone with a 16mp autofocus rear camera, 8mp front camera, and recording in 1080p or UHD 4K is becoming somewhat the norm. This is mainly on the case on the consumer side rather than enterprise, but the enterprise is following suit. A typical old school Windows Mobile MC67 for example has an 8MP rear camera.
Windows Mobile devices are somewhat limited here as the 32mb RAM allowance means large images and videos will probably crash the unit. This is where iOS, Android, Windows 8.1 or 10 for the Enterprise are key.
Giving the end user the ability to capture media in high resolution is a big plus point. Images of completed works, or videos problem areas can be highlighted in detail. But at what cost?
Cost!? Surely a high res image is better than a low res image? Agreed, but what is the cost of transmitting a 16mp image, or a 30 second 1080p video? A 16MP image is roughly 5MB, one visit can require 1-10 images for example. Worst case of 10 images, that is 50MB of data. A 30 second video clip in 1080p is about 210MB (other file types may be increase file size considerably.) UHD 4K would be even bigger.
If the device is 4G compatible uploads speeds are very fast @ 8MBps, 3G considerably slower 0.4MBps, under 3G it becomes a big issue. 4G would take about 30 seconds if a good connection.
210MBps video file / 0.4MBps upload speed = Nearly 9 minutes to upload. That assumes a solid constant connection for the full nine minutes. Driving to/from jobs means the signal will strengthen/weaken or stop altogether.
Why Capture High Resolution Images
The purpose of real-time mobile applications is to receive the results back in real-time, no delays, immediate billing cycles customer records instantly updated etc. If working in large cities with a good 4G presence this may work fine, if uploading images over Wi-Fi only this is also a solution, but not real-time in the majority of cases.
Consider if a 16mp image is actually required. Would a 5mp image suffice? On a PDF report to the customer the image will be scaled down anyway. Smaller file sizes improve the mobile connection speed and increase the probability of real-time communication, as well as greatly reducing the storage requirements on the back-end.
Get in touch to book a webinar or meeting about Windows based enterprise mobility devices.
Advancing technology and a shift in work habits have seen more employees working out of the office by leveraging the use of mobile devices and cloud based services to improve business tasks.
Creating solutions that map processes and increase productivity is a moving target. So what do we think will be the seven key enterprise mobility IT trends for 2016 ?
As the number of mobile users increases so does the risk of a security threat. A mobile device with access to company resources can be a key target for theft as well as cyber attacks.
If a device is lost or stolen what happens to the data stored on the device, or applications with access to company data? If that data is stolen or lost what would be the impact on the company’s reputation and how would it continue to operate?
Two years ago Gartner estimated that more than 75% of mobile applications would will fail basic security tests, there is no reason to believe that has changed
Data theft digitally can cause many problems. How are mobile users accessing data? Where is the data stored? Where are the devices used? Controlling the environment the devices can connect to and securing the channel of communication has become equally as important and securing the physical device themselves. Frost and Sullivan believes that security will be the biggest issue in the IT industry driven by rapid adoption of Cloud, Mobility and the Internet of Things.
Expect a more heightened emphasis on data protection of enterprise mobile data on devices in 2016 and beyond.
2. R.I.P. Android in the Enterprise… well not quite..
If the future of Enterprise Mobility is tablet shaped then the resurgence of Microsoft Windows may give many cause to pause as they specify Android or iOS as platforms.
We have seen Windows Phone take a real beating in the smartphone space, IDC believe that by the end of 2015 world wide share will be no more than 10.2%. Part of this is put down to the “app gap” a phenomenon where not enough apps are being developed – resulting in less take up for the OS.
Apps in the “rugged” or Enterprise area often are highly customised or built to map a specific, often still paper based process so the appeal of Microsoft as a corporate platform is still attractive. According to Strategy Analytics Windows Tablet shipments are projected to hit 49 million units in 2019, a 120 percent increase from 2015 levels.
So whilst Microsoft gets Windows 10 Mobile ready to fight Android and iOS more Enterprise clients will specify Windows 10 on an ever increasingly array of tablet devices as a preferred enterprise grade platform.
3. Line of Business Devices Still Relevant
World wide IDC believes that smartphone consumption will see it’s first “single digit” growth year in 2015.
Those of us in the enterprise space recognise that generic smartphones can offer great value for money for some projects. But it is often discovered that each organization has unique mobile worker requirements making a one sized fits all phone a tough deployment and support proposition.
LoB (Line of Business) rugged devices were in the past almost exclusively based on Windows Mobile 6.5 although now there are many Android devices available. They have been perceived as lacking in innovation, not surprising when compared to new shiney smartphones. However they can often have specific and high performance attributes built in that in the long run will enhance TCO. Features such as desk and vehicle docks, IP67 sealing, integral scanning and more robust construction plugs and sockets.
Whilst the value proposition of consumer grade devices on any OS has been enhanced by device management solutions if the unit was never designed to be used in a line of business environment in the first place it can give rise to large failure rates. Up to 50% in some studies.
LoB devices have not gone away they have just got a whole lot more relevant and less costly. Products like the new Aegex Windows Tablet aimed at the ATEX market is a case in point.
4. Enterprise Mobility Servitization
Incorporating all the elements needed for an enterprise mobility solution in one offering funding and support wrapper is not new. Servitization challenges existing thinking so that the solution is configured more around the delivery of the clients service to “its” customer.
Aston University Business School in Birmingham England think so much of this that they started a whole department built around the concept. The road to transform a business from a “manufacturer” to becoming the provider of a “service” is well explained in this video.
This approach is the norm in some industries. It is likely that that train or plane you traveled on last was not ticketed owned serviced or staffed by the brand on the outside. More likely by a facilitating organisation that focuses on the delivery of some or all of the elements to you the end user.
Cloud based apps, more flexible devices and MDM are some of the reasons we can expect mobility to be the glue that makes this initiative a reality. Look out of examples especially in scenarios where the client has high touch field based activities such as managing multiple contracts delivering field service or multi site FM.
5. Data data and even more data….
Citrix estimate that the number of mobile devices managed in the enterprise increased by 72% from 2014 to 2015 – most of them mobile
According to Gartner, by 2020, 25 billion devices will be generating data about almost every topic imaginable.
In the enterprise this sets all companies up for a significant challenge in 2016 and beyond: “How do we manage and make use of all this data coming in from location services, IoT integration with host systems etc in such a way as to convert it into a demonstrable competitive advantage”
6. Cloud Based Apps on the Device on your Choice.
What if your SME enterprise does not have access to in house IT or the budget to fund a traditional build from scratch enterprise mobility project ?
The good news for 2016 and beyond is that many businesses already have competent devices in the form of SmartPhones or Tablets. Plus more line of business apps are deliverable via the cloud on a subscription basis. This will allow businesses to run a project with reduced up front and ongoing costs that address mobile and back office productivity and deploy it with an excellent ROI.
7. Internet of Things IoT
We have heard lots about the adoption of the IoT but like RFID a few years ago can it break into the mainstream enterprise mobility sector. In 2016 the answer is…probably not.
Gartner believes that the providers of Internet of Things platforms are currently fragmented and would benefit greatly from cobbling together a better ecosystem where data is shared more broadly. 451 Research believe that at the moment a relatively small number – Nineteen percent of companies are using, planning to use or will be evaluating the use of IoT in their organisations.
A more immediate solution may well turn out to Near Field Communication (NFC) as a way of adding value in key deployment scenarios.
What sets NFC apart from typical RFID is the nature of its peer-to-peer communication feature making it able to act both as a reader and as a tag. NFC has a become more available on all manner of consumer and LoB grade devices like the T1500 making it a popular choice for contactless payment.
Have a great 2016, get in touch to arrange a webinar or meeting about your enterprise mobility project.
MobileWorxs are delighted to announce the availability of two new windows tablet devices joining the MobileDemand line up.
The 10.1″ xTablet T1500 and the 8″ xTablet T8500 are aimed at users looking for a high performance yet economic windows based rugged device to help improve mobile worker productivity.
xTablet T8500 and xTablet T1500 ship with Windows 10 Professional. Breadth of functionality excellent security ease of navigation and seamless integration with corporate systems make this OS increasingly the standard when it comes to enterprise grade tablet devices.
Research firm Gartner predicts that Windows 10 will become the most widely installed version of Windows ever. Predicting that half of enterprises will have started Windows 10 deployments by January 2017
Both the devices use the excellent Intel Quad Core Z3735F processor operating at 1.33GHz with 1.83GHz burst frequency. Standard Wi-Fi & Bluetooth optional 3G WWAN.
Rugged & sealed, we have you covered…
Applications that take place in rough and tumble environments require devices engineered to work and keep working.
These new devices come with a 36 month warranty and deliver excellent multi year total cost of ownership combined with outstanding durability Vs similar priced devices. Airborne dust and water sealing rating for the xTablet T1500 is IP65 and IP67 for the xTablet T8500. Both handle 4-foot drops to concrete and come standard with hand strap, carry handle rubber bumpers and screen protector for added protection.
Different applications and jobs require different functionality and accessories. Add a barcode scanner for inventory tracking or point-of-sale, deploy tablet mounts for a space-saving work station or utilize the GPS function for field based surveying.
xTablet 8500 and xTablet 1500 will be available mid February. Get in touch to book a meeting.
Research firm Strategy Analytics projects Windows gaining share on tablets as enterprise mobility tablet adoption and the demand for a premium OS on tablets grows. The research sees Windows tablet shipments projected to hit 49 million units in 2019, a 120% increase from 2015 levels.
This would give Microsoft market share growth from the current 10% to 18% in the period most of the gain at the cost of Android which will fall from 68% to 58%, with iOS share staying at around 23%.
Get in touch to book a webinar or meeting about Windows based enterprise mobility devices.
Before you ask the benefits of a mobile workforce solution can be far removed from just giving someone a smartphone a SIM card and an email account. A mobile workforce solution goes to the heart of what can still be a paper based process.
Mobile Workforce Solution Impact Areas
Boost productivity by keeping employees in contact with staff vendors and customers.
Close sales, solve problems and respond to urgent requests more effectively by enabling employees to work virtually anywhere.
Improve service and satisfaction by interacting with customers in real time.
Control IT and equipment costs and safeguard corporate data and apps.
Mobile application development time – our enterprise mobility grade development platform enables the creation of apps in days rather than weeks. Devise as many applications as required and update applications instantly as business processes change.
Remote workers jobs performed, clients visited or customer care tasks completed.
Time spent in the field by eliminating the need to return to the office to complete paperwork.
Responsiveness and service to your customers – tasks dispatched instantly to remote workers in the field.
Eliminate and Reduce
Cost – Manual data entry errors and back office costs.
Invoice billing cycle and accounts receivable lag time – completed job data received back from remote works in real-time.
Reliance on expensive custom coding as a method of producing and updating applications.
Provide – Competitive Advantage
A complete unified enterprise grade solution for developing, testing, deploying, maintaining and updating cross platform applications..
Real-time access to data in the field so workers have the information they need when they need it.
Create native Microsoft Android iOS and HTML layouts from the same application.
Out of box integration with your existing legacy and ERP back end systems.
The ability to deploy and manage from a single screen a variety of applications to multiple device types.
Post data directly to the web for review by back office staff managers workers or customers.
A compelling way to quantify the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) of a project. We can either build an application for you or teach you how to manage the whole process yourself using a single skill set.
Book a meeting or webinar about how we can help you realise the benefit of mobile workforce solutions.
Since launch xTablet T1600 has been positioned as a powerful Intel i5 based rugged tablet computer for those who need Microsoft Windows in the field. The device has become a favorite with those looking for a bigger brighter screen than most consumer tablets in an attractive package that can handle drops bumps and the elements without a drama.
8 New T1600 Features
Over the last few months we have added some extra features to the xTablet T1600 feature list:
Display – T1600 has a huge 11.6″ screen 1366 x 768 pixel resolution 135 dpi. The screen uses capacative multi touch technology on three versions. Standard is rated at 400 nits with an outdoor readable version at 730 nits. A new active digitizer is a good option to have for anyone who likes to draw or annotate, or need extra precision more than is available via just finger touch.
Integral Scanning – Honeywell Intermec EA31 2D CMOS imager module gives great scanning performance and low device power consumption.
Drive – T1600 is now shipping with 128GB M2-SATA SSD as standard.
Battery – T1600 has one Replaceable 45.8 watt-hour Li-Ion rated for around 7 hours of operation. A new optional: high-capacity 78.4 watt-hour Li-Polymer battery will be available in November.
Windows OS – Choose Windows 8.1 Professional and now Windows 10 Professional.
WWAN – T1600 has always been available with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth as standard. The unit now has optional: GPS, 4G LTE WWAN, NFC/RFID reader and mag stripe options.
Vehicle Dock – New powered cradle for road vehicles and fork lifts.
Carry case – All T1600’s come with a back of hand strap and carry handle, a carry case is now available in a number of configurations.
Get in touch to learn more about the T1600 rugged Windows tablet update book a 10 day trial or read the review in Rugged Tablet Review