Rugged devices withstand harsh environments that would decrease the performance of ordinary consumer devices. Rugged devices are built to be more resistant to dirt, grime, moisture, extreme temperatures, jarring movements, and being dropped. Rugged devices are used in many industries due to their increased reliability and lower overall cost.

Many industrial operations have begun to shift towards to consumer devices due to their low initial investment cost and ease of use due to familiarity, but what many do not know is that over the lifetime of that device a much higher cost will be seen. This is typically due to the increased level of downtime due to repairs and lost worker productivity. When a ruggedized device is introduced into operations the initial investment cost is higher, but these devices tend to have a longer product life cycle due to their rugged features and durability – the life cycle of a rugged device is typically twice that of a consumer grade device. The rugged features also account for the decreased down time for repairs. Failure rates on average are typically 3.5 times lower than non – rugged devices. Overall, the total cost of ownership (TCO) of ruggedized devices is 42.6% lower than consumer devices being used in an industrial setting.

The industries where rugged devices are seen most often include: supply chain and logistics, warehousing, distribution, manufacturing, field service, construction, architecture, healthcare, retail and courier.

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