I recently had the opportunity to travel to New York City for business.  While there, I made several observations about current trends that I believe are of customer interest.  Although most of my visit involved meetings with city agencies and departments, many of my observations apply equally to the private sector.
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One particular trend I noticed was the growing want, need, and general interest in tablet computers.  Right now, more and more manufacturers are interested in expanding beyond the industry marketplace, and are looking at business and consumer marketplaces.
What I observed throughout my meetings was an interest in providing a more robust and rugged tablet for city employees.  Discussions surrounded the need for agencies to begin looking at what their employees are willing to adopt as a touch-screen tool and the ROI from an investment standpoint.  It’s clear that the agencies are aware that they need to provide products and tools with rugged components; otherwise, they are simply throwing money away.  Rugged tablets have, among other things, the following important features:

  • a “5 foot drop” level required on a daily basis on the job
  • ability to function in harsh weather conditions such as humidity, extreme hot and cold
  • typical product life 50-75% longer than consumer grade tablets

Many rugged tablets can also be adopted by employees for use in their personal lives, which is great because it means the employees will actually use them.
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In the future, this trend will continue to grow.  Both the public and private sectors are aware that in order to stay in business, they need to be smarter about how they do business.  Having the advantage of a light, rugged tool with a long battery life and the ability to withstand harsh work environments is key to success.
I would love to hear your opinions or your own observations.  Please leave comments below, or send me an e-mail!