Professional / Industrial tablets

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Professional / Industrial tablets

Postposted on Thu Jun 07, 2012 7:53 am

Is anyone on TR using or developing for professional or industrial tablets?

At work we are about to start making some custom tablet software for industrial equipment management, tracking what is installed where, what has been swapped out, new items installed, part sparing, etc. For a variety of reasons we are sticking with x86 and windows 7, with an upgrade to Windows 8 after the first 6 months if it turns out not to be a flop. Barcode is a must, RFID would be nice, wireless and bluetooth will be turned off, cameras will be uninstalled or physically disabled.

So far the motion F5v seems the best fit. Processing power, hot swap battery, ssd, barcode reader, optional RFID. Cheapish at $3500 AU. http://www.motioncomputing.com.au/produ ... _pc_f5.asp

The H2 is an alternative, but its more expensive $5000+ and stupid thick. http://www.panasonic.com/business/tough ... ook-h2.asp

I like the idea of using cheap consumer tablets i.e. buying 10 $500 tablets vs 1 $5000 tablet and just throwing them away when broken. I've looked at a lot of the Atom and Brazos based models, but frankly they are crap. We would also need to factor in an separate hand held barcode reader. If we were to go this route Id like to use a pocketable 7" device, but so far there isn't much in the x86 space. Battery life also suffers in these consumer models.

All ideas, suggestions on models, stories of personal or work use are welcome.
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Re: Professional / Industrial tablets

Postposted on Thu Jun 07, 2012 1:48 pm

I suspect this is a market that is going to undergo a lot of changes in the next couple of years. Once commodity x86 tablets flood the consumer space, you'll see some of the manufacturers start sniffing around the industrial/embedded market, while at the same time the existing makers will be taking advantage of the cheaper components. We've already seen this in fixed Point of Sale systems, where what used to be pretty esoteric custom systems (touchscreen all-in-ones, essentially) are getting replaced with what are essentially commodity PCs.

Ruggedized systems will always be more expensive, but the guts will be getting cheaper and the options broader. You'll want to front-load your design work in an effort to be as flexible as possible, since you don't yet know where the "sweet spot" will end up for things like screen resolution. And you probably want to work at a high level as much as possible so the pain of doing an ARM version is minimized, in case you decide to go that route eventually (especially for a pocketable model).
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Re: Professional / Industrial tablets

Postposted on Thu Jun 07, 2012 2:38 pm

I took the cheap route of buying a $500 ASUS Transformer, $60 gumdrop case, and a ~$150 bluetooth scanner. I figure for the price I can just buy one every 2-3 years instead of spending $5k up front each time. Our environment isn't too hostile though, just a warehouse, so I expect it to not get knocked around too much.

I know you're looking at x86, but I figured I'd chime in on the durability standpoint anyway.
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Re: Professional / Industrial tablets

Postposted on Sun Jul 01, 2012 6:10 pm

Hi All

I was wondering if anyone has had mother board issues with the F5v as mine did a mother board in the 1st 2 months ?

Even though it was under warranty Im hoping this is not a comin fault??? :-?
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Re: Professional / Industrial tablets

Postposted on Sun Jul 01, 2012 7:45 pm

Does it have to be Windows based? If you can go Android there is the Motorola ET1.
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Re: Professional / Industrial tablets

Postposted on Mon Jul 02, 2012 9:01 am

EJ257 wrote:Does it have to be Windows based? If you can go Android there is the Motorola ET1.

Yeah I saw the promo stuff for that a while ago, looks neat, but windows is required for this project. There is no way the clients go with an OS they don't already have a locked down build off.
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Re: Professional / Industrial tablets

Postposted on Mon Jul 02, 2012 9:04 am

Terminal Server wrote:Hi All

I was wondering if anyone has had mother board issues with the F5v as mine did a mother board in the 1st 2 months ?

Even though it was under warranty Im hoping this is not a comin fault??? :-?

We haven't had any problems, or heard of anyone else. They did have problems with 3G modems at one point (switching frequency would cause a stall), but thats about it.
The current model is circa 2010 hardware but they keep making revisions, for example 3G and GPS are now built into all models. So its not out of the question, but in my experience unlikely.
SN95G5v3/A64 3500+ 2.2ghz@1.2v 800mhz@0.8v/1gb Geil UltraX/Seagate 250gb/Seagate 320gb/Liteon DVD/XFX 6600GT/2x2005FPW
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dragmor
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