Motorola has done it. Finally, an enterprise-grade point of sale tablet that is meant for the retail environment. Everything wrong with consumer tablets –durability, security, and compatibility has been addressed in this new, ruggedly handsome, piece of technology. For those of you who have patiently waited for an improvement to the consumer grade tablet –Your wait is over!
In order to make sure this POS tablet is everything it says and more, it is vital to adress the flaws of the current tablets- durability, security, and compatibility.
First and foremost, the question you are all asking, is this tablet primed for the harsh retail environment? According to Motorola, this device has a three-year life cycle as well as boasting a display screen made of Gorilla Glass (3o% thicker than most consumer displays). The thicker screen allows the tablet to withstand varying conditions and temperatures. While this is a significant improvement, in my opinion the ET1 still has a lot to prove against the retail-hardened point of sale systems.
Security is another fear retailers have with tablets. While I am not yet convinced that this tablet has worked out all the kinks, it is definitely an improvement from its predecessors. Motorola stands behind credit card confidentiality with removable and on-board media. Similarly, as I mentioned in my iPad Tablets: The Future Point of Sale? blog, what if a tablet is stolen? With the ET1, store managers can now clear activity or shut down any lost or stolen tablets from a remote location. Store Managers can also block applications as well as log on to multiple devices to closely regulate employee activity. I’m sorry kids, no Angry Birds at work.
Compatibility is the third issue where tablets in the past have been less than impressive. Motorola addressed this with the addition of RhoElements, a new HTML5 web-based environment. This platform will make it easy for developers to create a myriad of applications for not only the ET1, but other Motorola devices. Once a developer creates an application in RhoElements, the application is not limited to one operating system. In fact, the applications will work under Motorola mobile computers using Microsoft Windows Mobile, Windows CE, or Android. It is only a matter of time before RhoElements will support non-Motorola devices (no pressure guys!).
On paper, the ET1 truly has it all, but until retailers begin to roll these out (on sale in December), I am left with a few lingering questions. For now I say, well done Motorola, you are the first manufacturer to roll out a true, enterprise tablet solution.
As a Motorola Business Partner, Retail Tech will have the ability to sell these tablets at dealer prices in December. Please Contact Us if you are interested in this device for your retail environment!
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