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The demand for rugged tablets has Continuously increased over time. Companies and individuals across various industries are acquiring these gadgets to manage and streamline their core operations. This growth is attributed to the fact that, rugged tablets have found a niche in industrial operations that need the convenience of a mobile device with high processing power and the ability to withstand extreme environmental conditions.

Rugged tablets come in different forms therefore it is important to understand what features you should look out for to ensure you get the one that meets your specific needs.

Below, we shall discuss some of the essential features of rugged tablets that you should put into consideration and why they are important.

  1. 4G Cellular Connectivity

A rugged tablet with a 4G cellular connectivity means that if you are within the range of a cellphone tower, you will have access to high speed internet connectivity. This is important especially to workers who are out in the field as they will not have to wait to come to the office to complete their tasks. Cellular connectivity is also more secure than other connection solutions such as Wi-Fi which can be easily breached.

In addition, most organizations are now using cloud-based solutions for storage of data. This means that, using a rugged tablet with cellular network will ensure all tasks performed will be instantly saved in the cloud. These tasks include, documents scanned, site photos and messages shared over the network.

  1. Readable Screen in Different Lighting Conditions

Lighting conditions always vary depending on many factors such as, the time of the day, whether you are indoors or outdoors or the type of artificial light being used. When choosing a rugged tablet, it is important to consider whether the screen light can be adjusted such that it can be comfortably used in the field where there is bright sunlight and in darker places such as storage rooms. Therefore, choosing a rugged tablet whose screen light can be automatically or manually dimmed or brightened is key.

In addition to the screen brightness, it is important to ensure that the screen has appropriate filters such as blue light filters, anti-glare screen protectors and anti-reflective coating that reduces the reflection direct light.

  1. Resistant to Environmental Conditions

Rugged tablets are designed to function in extreme conditions. This makes them very useful for workers who may be working in below freezing temperatures or in tropical climates which are prone to high humidity.

Rugged tablets are also designed to withstand shocks. The shocks can be as a result of accidental falls and vibrations in places such as construction sites or forklifts. Most rugged tablets have impact protection and drop ratings that indicate how much they can withstand.

The drop ratings can be used in choosing which rugged tablets best suits your needs depending on the environment it is going to be used in.

Most rugged tablets are also waterproof which makes them perfect in areas where spillages are likely to occur. They are also dust proof which makes them ideal for places such as warehouses, construction sites and during dry weather when there is a lot of dust.

Before getting a rugged tablet, check carefully whether the device can withstand such conditions and up to what degree.

  1. Durability

Adopting the use of rugged tablets means that they become key devices in the operations of your business. Therefore, you wouldn’t want to risk having constant breakages, downtimes and constant replacements. It is therefore essential to choose a tablet that can stand the test of time.

When selecting a rugged tablet, ensure you check whether the device meets the specified standards and go for those tablets that have been tested and verified to withstand shocks and other harsh environmental factors.

  1. Battery Power

Given that most rugged tablets are not used in the typical office environment, a long battery life is a desirable feature.

An ideal tablet should be able to last an entire shift or workday. Most rugged tablets also come with a dual battery system which allows the user to replace the battery and use the one that is charged.

  1. Processing Power

Processing power of a rugged tablet is an essential feature that should be put into consideration.

If you are going to use the tablet for commercial purposes where a lot of complex data is processed at the same time, choosing a rugged tablet with the right processing power will save you time and the inconvenience of having to deal with a slow device.

  1. Built-in barcode scanner and quick response (QR) code scanner

Choosing a rugged tablet with a high-quality barcode scanner comes with a lot of convenience. Field staff working out of office will not be required to carry extra equipment for scanning purposes.

A rugged tablet with a high-quality bar code scanner can be very useful in reading scanning codes that are dusty, poorly printed or are in a curved surface.

When you are selecting a rugged tablet, it is important to consider the type of scanning that you will be doing. For instance, inventory can be easily scanned with a one-dimension barcode however if you are tracking people and packages you may need to use a two-dimension scanner.

In most cases, one-dimension and two-dimension scanners cannot be interchanged therefore it is important to know which one will be the right one for you.

Some rugged tablets may have the ability to read the barcodes without an inbuilt scanner but will need to have a high-quality camera. This method is however not the best for large scale or commercial operations because it is often slow and prone to errors.

  1. Flexible Input and Output

Rugged tablets have eliminated the inconvenience of manually recording data in the field and taking it back to the office to record it in an office computer. A rugged tablet can be used as a data entry tool to fill in forms, texts and maneuver through drop down menu items.

In order to increase the pace of data collection, you can choose a rugged tablet that has many data input options such as through stylus, touch, keyboard or multi touch screen.

A rugged tablet can also be used in an office set up to prepare spreadsheets, presentations and reports. Using touch screen for such tasks can be daunting that why a choosing a rugged tablet with a data dock is important.

Most data docks support a number of connections such as USB connectivity, external devices such as keyboards and computer mouse, ethernet and larger screens for display.

Before choosing a rugged tablet, it is important to check whether it has a docking port and whether the docking port is standardized to work with different docking stations or it needs a specific docking station.

Rugged tablets are different and each is designed to suit specific needs in various industries. As discussed above, the type of rugged tablet you choose should be dependent on your specific needs and how you intend to use it.