By Tom Kost, Xplore
Xplore has been in the rugged mobility business for more than 20 years. In fact, we’re the only manufacturer that has exclusively designed and delivered rugged tablet-based mobility solutions for global industry for more than two decades. So, we know rugged. It isn’t something we “also” do like many other device manufacturers that also build and sell an extensive lineup of non-rugged or desktop computers, or even vacuum cleaners or air conditioners. Rugged mobility is in our DNA. We also know that rugged devices tend to get a bad rap for being expensive devices when compared to off-the-shelf options marketed for enterprise use. Here’s the problem: You can’t compare the price of a mobile device that’s engineered to be rugged to the core to a device that claims to offer equal protection via the addition of a Gorilla Glass screen, a “ruggedized body” or external rubber casing. Yet, there are dozens of companies offering what they call “rugged”, and hope that those 6 letters will win the sale.
A trailer hitch can be installed on a VW Passat, but no Field Service or Utility company would think “Now we can save $30,000 by replacing our trucks with compact cars.”
That’s why I think it’s worth considering those qualities that make a rugged mobile device really rugged – and what doesn’t – and explain why many tablets, laptops and smartphones that now claim to be “rugged” are creating a false perception of true rugged pricing, performance and perseverance levels.