The service business industry is going more mobile by the day. To help you make the most out of your next technology investment, we’ve put together this list of helpful tips.
TIP #1: Be ready to talk the talk
Before you run to the store, you have to know what your options are and what they’re called. Here’s a quick primer to get you up to speed on the lingo:
A cell phone featuring a touch screen that offers computer-like functions, including web browsing and the ability to run software applications.
A hybrid between a smartphone and a tablet. It’s essentially a small tablet that also functions as a phone with screen sizes ranging from 5-7 inches.
A wireless personal computer with a touch screen that may or may not include cellular data service. It’s bigger than a smartphone but smaller than a laptop.
TIP #2: Size up your battery life
You want your techs on the job, not searching for a power cord. So it’s important that you choose technology devices that are up for the task. But things aren’t always as they seem.
Phablets are bigger than smartphones. So they must offer less battery life, right? Actually, that’s not the case. Consider the 4.7-inch iPhone® 6 and the 5.5-inch iPhone® 6 Plus. The bigger phone actually offers 10 more hours of battery life compared to the smaller model (24 hours vs. 14 hours). How can this be? Bigger size means bigger battery capacity. But the opposite is true when it comes to tablets. The bigger the screen, the less the battery life you’ll get.
Simply put, if you’re looking for the best possible battery life, opt for bigger phones or smaller tablets.
TIP #3: Mobile does not always mean portable
Tablets are a great technology for service businesses because they’re big enough for your techs – and customers – to easily read what’s on screen, sign work orders, and more. But they don’t exactly fit in someone’s pocket.
So if a bigger screen and portability are important to your crew, a phablet might be a good compromise since it still has a larger screen, but is easier to tote to and from the job. If portability is the most important thing, then a good old-fashioned smartphone might just be the way to go.
TIP #4: Poll the people
For your employees to use the technology you choose for them, it helps when they actually want to use it. So ask around and see what kind of responses you get. You might get an overwhelming amount of people who say they want a smartphone, or just the opposite – say they prefer a tablet because it’s easier to work with.
It’s going to be hard to please everyone. But by doing a little digging, you’ll let the team know you considered their input before making your decision.
TIP #5: Consider the data
If you opt for tablets, you may want to consider buying cellular-enabled models. These are available at wireless stores and come with a data plan – similar to a smartphone. Coolfront works with all devices whether they have a data plan or not. Being connected does give your techs some added efficiency like being able to connect to email at all times and other apps that may require internet connection.
Speaking of data plans. Having your employees constantly exceeding their monthly data limits can be frustrating, and downright expensive. That’s why it’s important to make sure you get enough data for everyone’s needs right from day one. It’s always cheaper to pay for data upfront than to pay for overages.
Your wireless carrier can look at your previous usage and help you find a data plan that’s a good fit.