Know Your AMPS From Your VESA Hole Patterns

Know Your AMPS From Your VESA Hole Patterns

If your enterprise mobility deployment involves the use of devices in vehicles it is a great idea to provide the user with a properly installed vehicle cradle.

We have a whole range of mounting solutions for traditional rugged tablets, Microsoft Surface, handhelds and printers. For implementation in a variety of situations. Some enterprise mobility device manufacturers such as MobileDemand do a good job of designing their own cradles including innovations like the Snap Mount.

Physically installing the cradle and making sure it is safe electrically and in use is the subject of a further post. Before you get that far you will need to consider how to attach the cradle to the vehicle itself.  This is where it becomes useful to know your VESA from your AMPS hole patterns

VESA What is it?

The good news is that the VESA standard is used almost exclusively for mounting flat screen televisions and PC monitors. Typically hole patterns for flat panel displays can be any of the following.

  • 75 mm x 75 mm
  • 100 mm x 100 mm
  • 200 mm x 200 mm
  • 400 mm x 400 mm

The bigger the screen the beefier the bracket needed.

 

AMPS What is it?

Know Your AMPS From Your VESA Hole PatternsThe AMPS hole pattern is also an industry standard configuration. It consists of four holes located in a rectangular pattern spaced at 30.17 mm by 46.05 mm. It is common for the AMPS pattern to consist of multiple holes to allow vertical or horizontal implementation. For hand held and tablet sized devices the vast majority of cradles and brackets such as the RAM Mount System will use the AMPS hole pattern.

 

This video from GPSCity.ca describes the AMPS hole pattern perfectly.

 

Know Your AMPS From Your VESA Hole PatternsKnow Your AMPS From Your VESA Hole Patterns

AMPS VESA some more of the alphabet soup we can help you with as you complete your enterprise mobility project. Get in touch if you need further help.

Rugged Tablet PC Keyboard Options

Rugged Tablet PC Keyboard Options

Application designers should always aim to provide field workers with drop down and multiple choice menus for data entry. However where a process requires that a narrative should be added to a record using a keyboard is often unavoidable. As these devices are intended to be used on the move plugging in a desktop keyboard is not always practical. So in cases like this it’s good to know that there are some mobile rugged tablet PC keyboard options.

But first! re-read our blog about screen types.

Built in Numeric and Function Keypad

Users of rugged tablets are often stuck with using the on screen keyboard when the most ergonomic route may well be a numeric keypad, especially in high volume scenarios like surveying van sales and merchandising.

Rugged Tablet PC Keyboard Options
Built in Keypad with Nav Keys and Scanner Trigger

Both our T7200 and T1200 products feature an integrated numeric backlit and tactile numeric keypad that include programmable keys as well as Enter, up / down / left / right navigation, tab, escape,Security, rotate display, function key barcode scan and suspend/power Full Stop!

Also included is a built in decimal point/full stop key. Very useful where surveying and measurements are being recorded.

Windows 7 on Screen

Rugged Tablet PC Keyboard Options
Windows 7 On Screen with Stylus

In some situations a process may require an amount of data entry beyond numbers. Where narrative text needs to be inputted into a standard Windows product like Excel or a custom made app it is possible to use the on screen pop up keyboard that is part of Windows 7. Pecking out letters to transcribe lots of text can be a chore, the handwriting recognition software works fine but does take some getting used to. Best approach is to have your app designer adopt drop down value menus.

Resistive Multi-Touch with on Screen Keyboard Windows 8

Rugged Tablet PC Keyboard Options
Windows 8 Metro Interface

The “Metro” interface of Windows 8 works best with multi-touch, but the capacitive touch technology used in consumer media tablets does not work with gloves or in the rain. So for the T1200 resistive multi-touch is used which means the device can be used in any operating condition. An on screen soft keyboard is supported and legacy applications with small screen elements and user check boxes can be precisely operated with a stylus. A built in keypad allows for direct entry of numeric data.

 

Snap On QWERTY Keyboard

Rugged Tablet PC Keyboard Options
Snap On Backlit QWERTY Keyboard

 

snap on keyboard that attaches to the bottom of a tablet can be a solution where text entry on the move is a major part of a process but using the on screen keyboard is not ergonomic.  The addition is backlit and includes a number of extra ports. The snap on can be used in conjunction with a vehicle dock.

 

 

 In Vehicle Cradle with Full Size PC Keyboard

Rugged Tablet PC Keyboard Options
In Vehicle Cradle with Full Size PC Keyboard

 

Where an employee works out of a vehicle and they return to it to enter data a full size keyboard can be attached to the vehicle cradle. The unit can be adjusted to maximise ease of use for the operator.

 

 

 

 

 

Key Point; which input method will suit the application and the circumstances of the user?

Contact UsTo discuss how a Rugged Tablet PC can help enhance your mobile business processes.

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Charging your Rugged Handheld or Rugged Tablet PC

Charging your Rugged Handheld or Rugged Tablet PC

Charging your Rugged Handheld or Rugged Tablet PC
Multiple Battery Chargers are Very Practical

You now have the perfect rugged handheld  or rugged tablet pc and a great app from MobileWorxs and you venture off into the field. But how long will the battery last and how can you ensure it will stay charged? Charging your Rugged Handheld or Rugged Tablet PC is a real consideration for an enterprise mobile deployment.

Not surprisingly battery life of any unit varies depending how long the device is used for in total. If a device has no rest period and is in constant use with scanning 3G or Wi-Fi then expect the battery life to be limited. Compared to a user who uses a device for 20 minutes at a time on site and places the device on standby during travelling, his device would last all day.  Lithium Ion batteries power most rugged handheld and tablet PC devices, and yes they do wear out so budget for new ones after about 2 years.

If device usage is going to be high the first consideration is to opt for high capacity batteries which are not hugely expensive. This can add half again to standard battery life. The next pointer does the unit accept dual batteries? This means a device has 2 batteries which can be separately changed while the device is turned on. When one battery is low the other is in use. It also means your unsaved work isn’t lost as with a hot swap feature there is no need to power down to swap a battery.

Be assured that even units with a single battery do have small internal backup batteries for saving apps and system settings just like a phone.

Charging Options – On Desk

Most rugged devices have accessories for office charging. These can be:

Docks/cradles which may have extra slots to charge spare batteries as well as ports for connecting USB serial devices and external screens.

Or just plain battery chargers. Depending how many devices and therefore batteries you intend to deploy a multi battery charger may be an option worth investigating. Also be sure to figure out where these desk docks or chargers are going to go. Space can be tight in many back of store retail or depot offices so putting up some dedicated racking and installing power sockets will help keep the whole thing looking like some thought has gone into the deployment.

Charging Options – In Vehicle

Vehicle chargers, have the ability to charge a unit in a vehicle on the move. The power source can generally be wired into the vehicle mains or through a cigarette lighter adaptor. There are a number of varying ruggedized vehicle docks, which some can cope with many more device cycles. Again these docks have additional ports allowing for a GPS unit for tracking, or connecting to a external WWAN stick.

Charging your Rugged Handheld or Rugged Tablet PC
A Vehicle Cradle Can Aid Driver Productivity

If a device is operating apps such as Sat Nav then charging is a must. It is also a requirement in most countries to have the device permanently fixed whilst the vehicle is in motion.

 

 

 

The cost of a vehicle dock can sometimes seem expensive, but no where near as much as a new unit, or repair especially if the device ends up being thrown in the foot well after each use !

Otherwise is in vehicle charging required? Just carry a spare battery? This is a cheaper option if your charging dock has a space for a spare battery to be charged simultaneously.

Charging your Rugged Handheld or Rugged Tablet PC – Key Points

  1. If your device will see 6-8+ hours constant use then additional battery capacity  should be a high consideration.
  2. Bear in mind that in many cases chargers docks and cradles are often not compatible across products – even from the same manufacturer. Strange but true !

We can help you navigate your way through this and many other snags that may arise during your enterprise mobility project.

Charging your Rugged Handheld or Rugged Tablet PC 2

 

 

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