Handheld devices with bar code readers on average fail more than 2.5 times a year and take 2.6 days to repair or replace
BRACKNELL, UK. 16th January 2020 – Handheld mobile computing failures are frustrating delivery drivers, warehouse workers, retailers and emergency services personnel across the UK and costing business. On average, the handheld mobile computing devices with bar code readers fail more than 2.5 times a year and take 2.6 days or more to replace or repair, according to workers in the latest research undertaken by Opinion Matters, on behalf of Panasonic TOUGHBOOK.
On average over 63% of workers felt their handheld device was more prone to failure than other technology devices they used. But in this fast-paced business world, device users were certainly not treating their handhelds with kid gloves. Workers reported device damage was caused by a wide variety of issues from drops and spills, to being left in freezing or melting hot conditions to being run over by vehicles!
Problem caused by:
Device dropped - 45%
Left it in a hot place - 20%
Just stopped working - 40%
Dropped in water - 12%
Run over by a vehicle - 8%
Spilt liquid on device - 16%
Left in a cold place - 7%
The most frequent damage from these accidents varied from battery, button and touchscreen issues to bar code reader failure.
Top reasons for failures were:
Battery problems - 39%
Touchscreen issues - 32%
Device stopped working properly - 24%
Broken screen - 22%
Buttons stopped - 15%
Bar code reader failure - 24%
Even when their devices were operating effectively, mobile workers still found them frustrating. The most annoying things about their handheld device were:
Slow or inaccurate bar code - 16%
Unable to use wearing gloves - 18%
Too heavy - 15%
Poor battery life - 18%
Poor screen sensitivity for signatures - 10%
The top design improvements they would like to see made to their handheld devices were:
Anti-scratch coating - 30%
Hand or shoulder strap - 28%
Heat reflective coating - 18%
Easier to clean - 21%
Hot swap batteries - 22%
Camera - 17%
And if these improvements were made and they had their perfect handheld device, workers promised huge increases in productivity as a result. Workers estimated that they would be 39% more productive on average.
Jan Kaempfer, General Manager of Marketing for Mobile Solutions Business Division - Europe, said: “There can be no doubt that mobile workers are feeling the frustrations of working with their current handheld mobile computing devices. As well as demotivating the workforce, these issues are having a huge cost and customer service impact on the businesses they work for.”
“The pressures are high in the business sectors where these bar code scanning handheld devices are used because every second counts. The work environment is also often difficult and exposed, which has an impact on the number of device accidents and failure rates. As a result, it is more critical than ever that technology buyers understand the device design factors that will have the biggest impact on their workforce and their business– ergonomic design, rugged protection and technology differentiators like hot swappable batteries and daylight visible screens.”
A full copy of the Handheld Troubles research executive summary can be found here: https://business.panasonic.co.uk/mobile-solutions/handheld-troubles-2020.
 Based on a sample of 250 UK device users
The Amber Group
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About Panasonic System Communications Company Europe (PSCEU)
Our quest is to make technology work invisibly together and free businesses to succeed. We believe technology should just work. That businesses will succeed if they can simply focus on their customers, in the knowledge that all the technologies delivering their capabilities work together. That is why we are dedicated to developing products and solutions that are so integrated with our customer’s way of working, that they are almost invisible – the workhorse in the background that powers business success.
PSCEU is made up of six product categories:
- Broadcast & ProAV gives you the freedom to tell the story with its high quality products and solutions, which ensure smooth operation and excellent cost-performance across a range of remote cameras, switchers, studio cameras and ENG P2HD. The cinema camera range of VariCam models and the EVA1 are capable of true 4K and High Dynamic Range (HDR) making them the ideal solution for cinema, television, documentary and live event production.
- Communication Solutions offers world leading telephony systems, SIP terminal devices and professional ‘network’ scanners giving you the freedom to focus on the communication and not the connection.
- Mobile Solutions Business Division helps mobile workers improve productivity with its range of Toughbook rugged notebooks, business tablets, handhelds and electronic point of sales (EPOS) systems. As European market leaders, Panasonic had a 48% revenue share of sales of rugged and durable notebooks and tablets in 2018 (VDC Research, March 2019).
- Industrial Medical Vision manufactures applications for various segments such as medical, life science, ProAV or industrial. The product portfolio includes complete and OEM camera systems, providing the freedom to see what can’t be seen.
- Security Solutions, built on a heritage of providing evidential quality CCTV footage. Delivering the highest image quality in all environmental conditions using our highly reliable, advanced technology cameras and image recording systems, giving you the freedom to feel secure.
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Panasonic Corporation is a worldwide leader in the development of diverse electronics technologies and solutions for customers in the consumer electronics, housing, automotive, and B2B businesses. The company, which celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2018, has expanded globally and now operates 582 subsidiaries and 87 associated companies worldwide, recording consolidated net sales of Euro 62.5 billion for the year ended March 31, 2019. Committed to pursuing new value through innovation across divisional lines, the company uses its technologies to create a better life and a better world for its customers. To learn more about Panasonic: https://www.panasonic.com/global.