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The Visible Value Blog

Introducing the new face of warehouse mobility

Posted by Zebra EMEA

January 7, 2016 at 10:16 AM


Increasing productivity by 14% is 100% possible

In the warehouse, efficiency and productivity are everything. That’s why we’re excited to announce the launch of the new TC8000 rugged Android mobile computer that can increase worker productivity by 14%. I’m sure you’re thinking – how? And where do these figures come from?

A new way to scan and a better way to work

Let me start with the how. We’ve enhanced workflows by finding:

  • A new way to scan: The TC8000 offers a new form factor. It moves away from the traditional gun form factor. Instead we’ve placed a 4-inch high-resolution WVGA screen on top of the handle with a range of scanning engines, a camera (optional) and proximity sensor on the rear of the screen. The main benefit of this design is that the user no longer needs to tilt the device to read the screen after each scan: they simply pull the trigger. Like all good ideas it’s simple and effective. And by placing the battery in the handle we counter weight the screen to produce a beautifully balanced device that’s comfortable to use for long shifts. Doing away with what seems a small little motion actually results in big productivity savings.
  • A better way to work: In addition, we’ve replaced the legacy Terminal Emulation green screen application with a highly intuitive modern interface. Instead of numerous button presses that are needed to work green screen apps the all touch interface allows your workers to manage many commands with a simple tap. We’ve integrated a tool that transforms your existing warehouse apps for use with the touchscreen using All-Touch Terminal Emulation software, powered by Wavelink. This software handles the conversion on the device – no coding and no modifications to your host application are required. The all-touch interface makes your business apps every bit as usable as the consumer apps your workers use on their own devices every day – with all the benefits this offers in terms of reduced training, enhanced workflows and increased productivity. The virtual keypad is touch-based and pops up on screen only when needed and is contextualized to the task in hand.


Productivity gains

The TC8000 has been used in our own warehouses and in the warehouses of beta customers that are staffed by a mix of full-time workers and contractors. The results are eye-catching. In terms of one worker, the TC8000 can do away with 360 wasted tilt scans per hour. Spread that out across 120 picks over an 8 hour shift and that comes to 2,880 wasted motions per worker per shift. At 1.25 seconds per scan this equals 3,600 wasted seconds per worker per shift – or one hour per worker. Across an eight-person team it’s like adding another worker to your line. The TC8000 is also significantly lighter than traditional devices to minimise fatigue – it requires 15 percent less muscle effort to use with a 55 percent reduction in the wrist motion.


In our test warehouses the sum of these benefits show a productivity gain of 14% per worker. A white paper is available that looks in more detail at the workflow efficiencies.


In future blogs I’ll look at the ergonomic changes we’ve made to the TC8000 and the features available.

John Wyer
Product Marketing Manager, EMEA

Topics: Retail, Manufacturing, Warehouse Management, Mobile