As consumer adoption of tablet technology continues to increase, retailers are striving to deliver the same or better experience to consumers in the store. To address this growing trend, Motorola today announced its Android-powered, enterprise-class tablet that brings the ease of consumer tablets to retail store associates across several vertical markets.
The new ET1 tablet contains key features for enterprise mobility deployment, including an industry-first application development framework ― Motorola RhoElements ― allowing a single application to look and act the same across all Motorola mobile computers, regardless of operating system. Enhanced durability features help the ET1 to resist damage. Bluetooth and an expansion port mean store associates can deploy a barcode scanner, magnetic stripe reader and other peripherals required to speed customer service and increase workforce productivity.
To diminish any security concerns surrounding tablet technology, Motorola has equipped the ET1 with password protection technology. A single device can be shared among store associates, who can retrieve information based on their individual responsibilities and access rights.
Device sharing means that each store will require fewer total devices, effecting a reduction in total financial investment, noted Frank Riso, Senior Director of Retail Solutions, Motorola Enterprise Mobility Solutions.
“Retailers can now deploy enterprise-ready tablet technology with about 40% fewer devices,” Riso told Retail TouchPoints. “This is a significant cost savings allowed by multiple users on different shifts utilizing the same device.”
He adds that store managers can control, update and monitor ET1 application use remotely. Security is further enhanced with automatic shut-down should the ET1 be damaged or stolen. “A number of built-in security elements protect retailers and their data as well as consumers and their personal information,” Riso said.
The ET1 differs from typical tablet devices due to its upgraded durability and design, according to Riso. “The ET1 is made with durable Gorilla Glass and is about 30% thicker than consumer-device displays, so it can take the bumps and drops of typical retail use.”
A generous 7-inch color display exhibits video and high-definition images, with graphics that may customized to match a retailer’s branding. The unit is equipped with an 8-megapixel camera to allow barcode reading, and a front camera for video conferencing. It also includes a charging cradle, battery pack and strap.
Applications available via Motorola’s partner and independent software vendors include assisted selling features, mPOS software, an item locator and electronic dashboard management.
“More and more retailers want to arm their associates with tablet devices for customer facing applications, especially for assisted selling,” Riso said. “Along with hospitality for table-side ordering and healthcare for patient check-in, there’s excitement across the verticals for this enterprise-ready device.”
Motorola’s ET1 is in end-user beta testing and scheduled for a Q4 2011 release, Riso reported.