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What to Consider When Choosing a Rugged Tablet PC

Here are a couple of the initial considerations you should make when evaluating a rugged Tablet PC:

Tablet PC Survives AbuseGo Rugged—Certifiably Rugged. What is “rugged”? A rugged Tablet PC is critical for tough, rough and harsh environments, indoors and out. Unless a Tablet PC is truly “rugged,” a VDC Research study indicates that total ownership costs will quickly skyrocket out of control. The study indicates that failure rates almost double when a commercial-grade Tablet PC is used, instead of a rugged Tablet PC. Specifically, these failure rates are 16.7 vs. 8.5 percent (source: VDC Research, page 29 for small form factor). Another report shows that ruggedized devices are designed for durability, and as such, their average annual failure rates are 3.5 times lower than non-ruggedized models.

Go Windows. Real Windows. There’s virtually nothing more important than a computer’s operating system and applications, and what can and can’t be installed, managed, updated, upgraded and used, every day, by mobile employees. Some tablet PCs operate using complete Microsoft® Windows® OS and applications, which streamline enterprise administration and management while giving end-users software that they know and use. End-users gain the productivity advantage of familiarity and comfort, while corporate IT teams avoid having to support yet another application or migration path using other operating systems—or even Windows Mobile and/or Windows CE.

Enterprise-class devices with Microsoft Windows also give enterprises the added benefit of a large, mature software development community. Gartner reports on the advantage of using Microsoft for mobility: “Gartner recommends that clients deploying applications on a ruggedized device primarily consider only Windows platforms to reduce project risk … Other options represent a high degree of risk for buyers because of the small number of vendors producing those products.”

To continue reading this white paper (PDF), click here.

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