When it comes to working out in the field, nothing is more frustrating than when you have technology that won’t work, or worse, breaks. Fortunately, rugged tablets are not only able to get the job done, they won’t crack under the pressure.
The first thing any device needs when working in the field is portability. Rugged laptops are durable enough to handle the abuse they’re placed under, but they tend to be large and cumbersome. It can be difficult to lug around a full laptop, and when you need to use it you have to find a place to set it down or else struggle holding it in one hand.
A rugged tablet is far easier to carry and hold while operating. They’re often smaller and lighter than laptops, yet just as rugged and durable. In addition to this, MobileDemand’s tablets and cases come with briefcase handles and back hand straps that make carrying and using and holding the tablet with one hand even easier and more comfortable.
The second factor that makes a tool good for field use is durability. How rugged a device is determines if it will be used, or left behind for fear of it breaking. Rugged tablets are built with harsh environments in mind. With MIL-STD-810G testing and a minimum of IP 65 sealed, these devices are built tough to survive almost any working condition. Dust, rain, ice, snow, drops, and all manner of temperatures and elements won’t harm a well-built ruggedized tablet.
Lifespan and Maintenance
There are many consumer grade tablets out there, and they’re all powerful tools. Yet they share a single flaw, they’re fragile. They can be rendered useless with a single short drop. If this happens, it’s often cheaper to replace the device, rather than repair it, which leads to further down-time as the new device is shipped and then software must be reinstalled. With rugged tablets, should it malfunction after years of abuse, there are often maintenance plans that can be purchased, ensuring that even if the worst does happen, you won’t be down for long.
Another consideration is the lifespan of the tablet itself. Consumer tablets have a lifecycle of only a few years. At that point, a newer model is released and the older one becomes obsolete. Most rugged tablets tend to have lifecycles of five years or longer. This allows you to keep your tool functioning at its best for a longer period of time.
Operative System and Software
Rugged laptops run almost exclusively Windows. While Windows works well for most businesses, rugged laptops tend to be large and bulky making them difficult to use on the go. Handheld devices are portable and most run a form of Windows, but it’s not usually a full version and often struggles to run basic software. Smartphones are also of great use, but they’re either Android or Apple, and run their respective OS.
Rugged tablets strike the perfect balance. They’re smaller and less bulky than a laptop, enabling them to be carried about with ease, yet many still run full Windows 10. This enables workers to utilize any software that would normally be used on a desktop or laptop with a tablet. This is especially valuable for field workers who often require powerful software for things such as diagnostics, data entry, and other daily tasks.
An added benefit of a rugged tablet is its versatility. Extra features can be added to the tablet either through adding components and tools through ports in the device, Bluetooth, or some can be directly integrated into the tablet itself. One such example is a barcode scanner. A barcode scanner can be added to most tablets by purchasing a scanner than connects through the USB port. In addition, there are some tablets that a barcode scanner can be built directly in, making scanning barcodes as easy as pushing a button. Not only will this make your employees more accurate and efficient, if you get an integrated barcode scanner, it will be one less tool they have to carry around.
The peripherals aren’t just limited to barcode scanners either. RFID technology, LTE mobile network, and hot-swappable batteries are just a few others that can be used with the right tablet. With a tablet, almost anything can be used in conjunction with it to make your employees more productive.
Rugged tablets are an excellent tool for use out in the field. They’re light and portable yet possess all the power and strength of a laptop. They’re built rugged, with a longer lifespan, better operating system, and add-on capabilities to make them the ultimate mobile tool.