In this, my second blog on the design innovations in our all-new industrial computer, the TC8000, I’m looking at five key objectives that our design team set to help ensure the device is easier and more comfortable to use for long periods.
The ideas are based on the time that our ergonomics experts spent alongside teams in warehouses and logistics operations, noting the small things that frustrate people about their devices and which can damage productivity.
- Make it as easy to use as people’s own technology
Legacy green screen apps aren’t easy to use. In fact, many new users in warehouses do a double take when they see the green screen on their device and how this compares – unfavourably – with their own smartphone.
We’ve overcome this issue by using All Touch Terminal Emulation (All Touch TE). All Touch TE automatically converts green screen apps on the TC8000 to a rich graphical user interface. Keyboards pop up that are context-aware and which allow users to type faster and with less errors. The interface – that will be familiar to your users from their own consumer devices – eases workflows, reduces the need for training and drives more productivity gains. What’s more, you don’t need to change your back office, buy new middleware servers or do any coding.
- Less weight, more results
Traditional gun-style mobile computers can be heavy to use for long periods.
The TC8000 overcomes this by using lightweight yet robust plastics with an aluminium bezel – which increase durability while reducing weight. As a result it’s 33% lighter and requires 15% less muscle effort to use, so reducing tiredness.
- Create a well-balanced scanning partner
Moving the screen to the top of the TC8000, and putting the scan engines and camera in the rear of the screen, potentially made for a top-heavy device. We overcame this by using the battery – integrated in the handle – to counter the weight. The result is a well-balanced unit that’s comfortable in hand.
- Support gloved operation
As users working in the yard or cold store need to wear gloves, we’ve ensured they can keep their gloves on when using the touch screen. We’ve also ensured, through extreme tumble and drop test ratings, that the TC8000 will withstand knocks and drops to continue working in harsh environments, even down to -20 degrees Celsius.
- Customise to users’ preferences
The TC8000 comes with a wide range of enterprise-grade accessories including carry straps, holsters, and mounts for carts and desktops (for hands-free scanning). This allows users to tailor the device to their apps and preferred ways of working.
The TC8000 supports innovative ways of working. And, based on research in our own warehouse, it can achieve, on average, a 14% boost to productivity. In effect, that gives each worker on an average shift an hour back each day. Across a team of eight people that’s the equivalent of adding another person to the team. For more on the TC8000 please visit our video experience here where I talk you through its ergonomics, features and benefits. The experience also looks at our other industrial products including Wi-Fi networks and printers as well ready to go apps and utilities that make it easy to deploy, manage and optimize your mobile technology.