Mobile Devices vs. Consumer Smartphones July 8th, 2021
When it comes to handheld devices being used in organizations for work, choices are aplenty. Mobile technology has taken over our professional and personal lives by storm. The ability to produce more, respond faster and increase customer loyalty are all reasons why handheld devices have become popular with users. Especially as organizations work to become more powerful and efficient than their competitors, the choices they make around this investment are coming under the scanner.
Many organizations are now choosing to invest in consumer smartphones. The steady adoption of this type of technology and familiarity with consumer devices has led many organizations to purchase consumer devices for their mobile workforce. This decision is based on the fact that:
Users/Employees are more familiar with how these devices work so there would be less need for training
Small form factor makes it easier to manage and handle
It's inexpensive ....or is it?
Well, these are all good reasons, but we could argue that this is a very short-term view and companies that have an approach like this may not fare well in the long run.
Using a consumer smartphone for work, which is set in a specific environment and may have certain constraints, just will not work. Using the right tool for the job is important. A fragile unspecialized consumer smartphone will not be able to keep pace with work life. This will eventually lead to inefficiencies and frustrations from the users/employees. By design, consumer devices are simply better suited to slow-moving, single-user applications. While they may seem less expensive to purchase, it may end up costing 51% more than an enterprise-grade mobile device*. In one year, smartphones are 4 times more likely to fail*, even when used with protective cases.
Organizations need a tool suited for their environment, that can match their pace of work and most importantly is reliable, so their work never halts. A tool that helps you work longer without recharging often, faster without losing accuracy, and tougher without worrying about wear and tear. This is the kind of research and development that goes into making these enterprise-grade mobile devices.
A robust mobile device is multi-functional. For instance, a courier service company needs to equip its employee with a device that enables proof of delivery, barcode scanning, navigation, and communication with office/colleagues. Mobile devices are built to keep these requirements in mind.
The environment also plays an important role in defining the specifications of the devices needed. For example, in healthcare one needs a device that is fast-paced, can survive usage of hard disinfectants, endure long work shifts, and much more.
Security on work devices has become critical for organizations. A smartphone will not be able to match the secure features of a mobile device. Companies that manufacture mobile devices offer support in terms of security updates and easy transition to new operating systems. This becomes vital in elongating the life of your device thereby reducing your total cost of ownership.
A forward company does not invest in smartphones before asking a few questions like:
How durable is the device?
Does it fit my specific needs related to my specific environment?
What happens when a new operating system is released, and we need support?
Can it handle all the tasks without compromising on speed and accuracy?
We already see in the market some see many purpose-built mobile devices that become sleeker and more aesthetically pleasing with a user-friendly form factor and functionality, taking some inspiration from smartphones, giving organizations a best of both world scenario.
*source: VDC Enterprise Mobility Device TCO
Samantha is BlueStar's Digital Media Specialist, and the primary contributing writer for VartechNation.
Previously, she has worked as a Public Relations Associate and a Social Media Manager.