Choosing a Tablet to Take Your Field Service Mobile

So, you are going to purchase tablets for your field service. Decisions you will have to make include which operating system (iOS, Android, Windows), how...

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So, you are going to purchase tablets for your field service. Decisions you will have to make include which operating system (iOS, Android, Windows), how durable and reliable the machines are, and what it will cost. This post will provide a brief overview of field tablet operating systems.

Should You Stick With the Familiar?

A PCMag’s Readers’ Choice survey found iOS and Android to be tied for first place for most popular tablet operating system. If you and a majority of your workers already use one or the other, adopting the familiar system will make the transition to the field business app easier. This holds true even for those employees not familiar with mobile technology since they will have a built-in support system.

There are other considerations, however, specific to your business. Does your field business offer commercial IT services? Are your tablets likely to be dropped, run over with forklifts, or used in the rain? It might be necessary to suffer through a bit of learning curve to get the best system and hardware for your specific field operation.

Most Popular Operating Systems: Android and iOS (Apple)

Android, Google’s mobile operating system, will give you the greatest selection of hardware. Android is installed on a number of top brands of tablets and mobile phones, including Samsung, Google Nexus (manufactured by Asus), Sony Xperia, Lenovo. Purchase field service software and other apps for Android directly from, the official Android app store, to avoid any buggy or malicious software.
RazorSync Rating on Google Play: 4.7/5

iOS, the operating system on iPhones and iPads, is considered one of the easiest systems to learn, which might make it easier to onboard new mobile users. Your hardware purchases will be limited to iPads and iPhones, which may be more expensive than equivalent Android devices. If you will be using a tablet for heavy computing, iOS may not be up to the task. iOS apps are only available through Apple’s App Store.
RazorSync rating on the App Store: 4.5/5

Fire and Windows

Windows 8.1 on the Surface Pro 2 and Kindle Fire (Android, but restricted to Kindle apps) have very limited selections of business software apps. Neither Amazon nor the Windows Store offers any search results for field service software or field management software. This suggests neither would be a good choice for your service business.

Next: Durability and Reliability

Our next post will discuss rugged, ruggedized and standard tablets, pointing out how to evaluate your business needs when shopping for hardware.

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