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10 Key considerations to think about before choosing a new mobile device

From faster bar code scanning to easier collaboration, mobility is having a huge impact on enterprise operations. But choosing the right devices for your specific circumstances is not always easy. Knowing precisely what you need up-front will ensure your organisation doesn’t commit investment to devices that simply aren’t up to the task in hand.

Before choosing a new mobile device, here is a checklist of 10 key considerations to help ensure you get everything you need.

  1. Security

Not all devices come with operating systems (OS) that can cope with enterprise security demands. For example, consumer-grade operating systems may have features such as voice and cloud software that undermine corporate privacy and security policies.

  1. Training

Will your workers adopt their new technology or use workarounds because it is difficult to use? OS familiarity can play a big role. As can training. But if your devices have to be replaced regularly then training costs can soar. The time it takes to create new training, time to complete the course and hours away from the job all mean extra expense.

  1. Battery

Multiple shifts or days spent offsite require devices that can go the distance. Battery power is important. So is the ability to easily swap out batteries with fully charged replacements to prevent any significant downtime.

  1. Accessories

Being able to charge a series of devices or batteries together, rather that individually, could reduce the number of power outlets you use. Also, if your devices need to be replaced regularly, remember you will probably need to purchase new cradles and chargers too.

  1. WLAN

A strong wireless connection can mean the difference between frustrated workers and faster workflows. Aim for devices that can offer enterprise grade 5 GHz Wi-Fi without having to invest in extra access points.

  1. Scanning

Holdups in simple processes such as bar code scanning can undermine your whole operations. Capturing data quickly is one thing. You may also need devices that can deal with damaged or poorly printed barcodes.

  1. Durability

Drops, spills, dust, bad weather—they can all affect your devices. Durable designs that can withstand these adverse conditions will prevent the cost of failed devices and downtime. Check the drop specifications, tumble specifications, and IP sealing rating on the devices you review.

  1. Voice

Keeping your people connected is just as much about voice contact as it is about data transfer. Devices that can combine both will cut the need to invest in other comms devices, like walkie-talkies. If you can integrate PBX telephony with Wi-Fi then you can also reduce call charges.

  1. Lifecycle

Choosing a device that has to be upgraded too often can result in a fleet of mixed generation devices. This leads to significant training and support complexities, as well as extra capital outlay. In addition, you may find the accessories and chargers for new models are not always backwards compatible.

  1. Support

Keeping a spares pool can be costly. So check whether there are support plans that can provide you with quick replacements when devices do break or fail. These can cover everything from normal wear and tear through to accidental breakage and should be customisable to suit your operations.

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