We have had a lot of our customers come to us this week with rumours that O2 are discontinuing the Motorola ES400 and the rumours are indeed true. We checked out the statements being sent out to O2 customers (that happen to be ours too!) and whilst they have a small stock left, they will be removing the ES400 from its core offerings as soon as this has gone. As far as we’re concerned the Motorola ES400 is still available and after talking to Motorola, yesterday it should be for another year. If you take mission critical seriously, and you can take my word for it, most mobile solutions are or should be mission critical, then you need a rugged PDA that’s not just rugged but has lots of expertise behind it, inexpensive and quick repairs regardless of service contracts and most importantly a defined roadmap with lots of notice. Network operators offer none of this, they have turned what could have been a lovely semi-rugged device in the Motorola ES400 into a smartphone scenario for many and there will be issues with this as it is dropped. At rugged and mobile the mission critical and “Rugged” mean almost the same. Everyone that bought through O2 will now find it more and more difficult to get help and to get service as they focus on something else no doubt and probably try to push that in to you to lock you in for another 2 or 3 years contract. I’m sorry to whine but it’s the facts we see every day here and you only have to have owned an iPhone to know exactly what I mean. We judge the last element above about being rugged quite seriously and we also reflect on how the manufacturer has acted in the past. You can see here how manufacturers do that and why some are better suited to mission critical than others. The lessons to be learned here are to always make sure you buy your hardware from someone who knows everything there is to know about and also someone who will be as passionate about your business and solutions as you are. The Rugged and Mobile blog.