3G as the driver to Innovation
We’re now starting to see a lot more devices come onto the Rugged PDA market with the latest 3.5G capability, however many of the most common devices, like Motorola’s MC55 are still using EGPRS which makes me wonder if the business world has caught up to 3G yet?
GPRS will give you about 114kbps throughput which in terms of syncing data is pretty much all you need. Most businesses out there are using field mobility devices that sync simple text or database updates over the air and as such probably don’t require any more. However we’re now seeing the next wave of applications hit the market where a GPRS connection would creak under the pressure.
A lot of mobile inspection applications are now trying to use the camera on the Rugged PDA in order to add another line of proof to their workflow and this puts an enormous strain on the data connection as hundreds of images can be queueing up to be sent back your servers.
Social applications are also now starting to hit business process where sharing and updating of data from and to multiple devices and databases is going to be common place. Add to this the frequency and nature of the data and you can start to come up against some much higher bandwidth requirements.
Background syncing is also something that is becoming essential. As the devices become more central to workers daily lives, they need the ability to use the voice and data functionality on the Rugged PDA without interruption and this largely means using a 3G device, independent of the data speed it can attain.
We saw this with GPS. All those parcel delivery applications suddenly wanted to add in location to their workflow and now with better and better connected devices we’re seeing businesses trying to find ways they can utilise this extra bandwidth.
With drivers like these, I think we’re in for some extremely exciting times in the mobile world.
If anyone needs any help with any aspect of data capture then drop me an email, I’m always willing to help.
The Rugged and Mobile blog.