How to Pick an Android Phone for The Gig Economy
If you are considering doing full or part time driving or delivery work you will get around to considering how to pick an Android phone for the gig economy
What Do You Need?
When you join Amazon Flex and many other Gig economy driver or delivery schemes such as Deliveroo and Uber you will need a vehicle and an Android or an iOS phone to a minimum spec and memory. Your device is likely to need to have a camera with a flash and GPS Location Services.
Most opt to go with Android over iOS devices based on affordability, a variety of rugged phone options and better device management connectivity.
7 Reasons to Use a Separate Smartphone
Yes you can use your private phone. But is it Rugged enough? The phone will likely get a lot of wear and tear especially if you end up being very busy day after day. Inevitably you will drop the power jack may well become worn and the weather could take its toll.
This is a really important tool for your Gig life your success may well revolve around this.
- Longer Battery Life. Typically purpose built devices have higher capacity batteries than a standard smartphone.
- Pick something more Rugged and sealed. Purpose built devices are typically tested to multiple 4 foot drops.
- Longer life cycle. Enterprise grade devices tend to remain the same for longer therefore making repairs less costly.
- Lower cost extended maintenance plans.
- Out of the box value added features such as device management.
- High performance durable construction and components.
- Longer life vehicle mount options. Better quality components so they last longer.
Driving Heath and Safety
If you are using your Phone for calls or navigation whilst driving take some time to gen up on some tips here and here.
If your Gig requires higher than average rates of barcode scanning make sure you pick a device with a dedicated scanner. You will be pleased you did. If you are just scanning a few codes per day, use a scan through the camera app, we can help you pick one.
Tax For Gig Economy Workers
In the UK the Vast majority of Gig economy drivers are self-employed. As such you are responsible for paying your own taxes and National Insurance contributions. This means completing a self-assessment tax return each year. Good news is that you do not pay taxes on all your income only your profits. This means you can deduct your business expenses from your total earnings. Learn More
Our Unitech Rugged Android Handheld Bundle
Our Unitech EA502 is a fully featured enterprise grade handheld that has a huge array of accessories and value added features. A typical user will have this device in service for around 5-6 years. This is the sort of device that major delivery and field service organisations are using for long term sustainability.
At our shop you can pick up a device vehicle cradle and mount use the coupon GIG19 to get 10% off. Delivery is free in the UK and flat rate into other countries in EMEA.
How to pick an Android phone for the gig economy get in touch by phone or use web chat to talk to our team about equipment specification your mobility deployment project leasing and device management.
Add Enterprise Grade Companion Scanning to Any Mobile Device
Are your staff using smartphones or tablets for day to day apps. If they need to scan significant quantities of bar codes they will face a common challenge. The camera is great for selfies but not really designed for volume scanning and can be slow and a real pain (literally) If so, its time to add enterprise grade companion scanning to any mobile device.
Devices with integral scanning tend to be purpose built rugged and expensive. The need to scan frequently is often the function of a repetitive work process such as parcel delivery. So in a BYOD environment or where the users have devices that do not feature integral scanning products like the Opticon range are a straightforward and economic way to add 1D or 2D bar code scanning without interfering with your app or installing any fiddly drivers.
Watch the video to see how easy it is to Connect to your smartphone or tablet in a few moments using Bluetooth. A scanner like this is about the size and weight of a desktop mouse making it very easy to use pop it in a pocket or use a lanyard.
Colin Foster at Opticon says;
“Companion scanning provides a cost effective, easy to use data capture solution when paired to a smartphone or tablet device. Using the technology is simple; you just point, click and scan. Companion scanners like the OPN-2006 are small, lightweight and ergonomic in design which makes it very simple to carry, use and store the device”
How many scans a day are too much for a camera on a smartphone or tablet? Tough question the answer is that once the user starts to comment about how ergonomically unpleasant the task has become its time to do something else !
Typical Companion Scanning Applications
- Inventory management and merchandising
- Field service
- Order picking
- Item identification
- Visitor registration
- Facilities management
Need to scan bar codes – ditch the camera get in touch to add enterprise grade companion scanning to any mobile device.
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Blue Collar BYOD in Enterprise Mobility Fact or Fiction?
Gartner surveyed a bunch of CIOs last year and found that half are aiming to get to a Bring Your Own Device only model by 2017. Not surprisingly their employees were less than convinced of the benefits highlighting many issues like reimbursement and security.
BYOD coverage almost always focuses on the adoption of technology by white collar staff. As the Gartner study pointed out the employee travels to work under their own steam in his own clothes and brings his own pen so why not a computer. Just make sure all the security angles are covered come up with a HR policy. Bingo! instant saving and less money tied up with pesky technology. This is an attractive proposal for some organisations but whether it will actually save them any money long term is debatable.
lf the fuss over zero hours contracts is anything to go by it is certain that the nature of work is changing. What we thought was the norm sometime ago has been displaced by an atmosphere of anything being possible.
So what is stopping an organisation requiring hourly paid blue collar employees to bring their own mobile device to work to carry out that inventory POD or field service task?
As the white collar fraternity iron out the security app access and HR issues this will be the next step. Especially as the trend to having fewer permanent staff takes hold for people in mobile worker roles.
Crazy I hear you think well maybe, but not so long ago not many would have predicted large education software finance and airline users rolling out thousands of consumer grade tablet computers.
The attraction of shifting all that expense to the blue collar employee is likely to be irresistible for some companies. To make it work they would partner with a device supplier maybe on an exclusive basis. They would be able to provision sell rent manage and support an appropriate unit on iOS Android or Windows platforms to an employee from day one.
Changing Attitudes Starts at the Coffee Shop
How will employers get staff used to this concept? In this dystopian future a University student works in a pub or coffee shop. Embracing the very best of the zero hours culture the chain posts hours available to work on an app. Potential staff can compete with each other to flag their availability or even outbid each other for the work on a shift or hourly basis. The only way they can be involved is having their own smartphone in the first place and be registered or pre-approved to bid. There are already examples of this Elance marketplace developing for the skilled freelance community. Watch out for it becoming more mobile and more the norm in the semi and unskilled sector.
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