3 Considerations to Choose the Right Android Device for Barcode Scanning

According to recent figures, there are over three billion smartphone users globally, with the number expected to grow by several hundred million over the next few years. So it’s not surprising that enterprises across most industries are already looking to tap into the smartphone revolution to bring down business costs, add greater flexibility, and give your employees access to essential capabilities such as high speed barcode scanning.

Given the ease of access and familiarity with such devices compared to single-use hardware scanners, smartphones offer an affordable way to introduce mobile working and speed up and automate critical business processes – but only if you pair the right device with the right user!

In this blog, we’ll offer Scandit’s insight into the most important factors to consider when choosing the right Android smartphones for your enterprise barcode scanning use cases, whatever industry you work in.

Gaining a Clear Picture of Your Scanning Needs

While Scandit’s computer vision technology turns any camera-enabled smart device into a powerful and reliable mobile scanner – here we are looking at choosing the right Android smartphone to match your employees’ specific and diverse scanning needs, to deliver the desired level of productivity at the right price point. Watch just a few of the ways smartphones can innovate business tasks:

Three Device Consideration Selection Essentials

In our recent guide ‘The 2020 Enterprise Android Device Guide for Barcode Scanning’ we’ve collected our expert guidance along with the test results from side-by-side comparisons of some of the most popular Android devices on the market across a number of key criteria.

For starters, it is helpful to think about what you actually need smartphones to do for different groups of users or employee roles. This will help you identify what characteristics you need to prioritize when searching for and purchasing the right device (or often devices).

So here are our top three consideration essentials:

1. What type of scanning will it be used for?

Crucially, you need to have a very clear picture of how the devices will be used to capture data and scan barcodes. A retail associate assisting customers in-store with a clienteling app will likely have very different requirements to a last mile delivery driver sorting packages in his van.  Key considerations include:

  • What types of barcodes will you be scanning?
  • Will you be scanning high volumes of barcodes (e.g. hundreds vs. thousands)?
  • How frequently will you need to scan barcodes (e.g. every minute vs. once a day)?
  • Will you need to scan multiple barcodes at once (e.g. by using our MatrixScan technology)?
  • Are some of the barcodes small, poorly printed or damaged?
  • What type of lighting is present in the scanning environment?
  • Will you need to scan from a long distance (e.g. if items are stacked high)?
2. How long will you need the battery to last for?

One of the major benefits of using a camera-based scanner, instead of a peripheral device or dedicated scanner, is that it uses less power to operate the device.

However, power consumption is still important to consider when choosing a device. Think about how long you need it to remain powered after a single charge, and when there will be the opportunity to charge it. For example, do you need the device to last for a single shift without a recharge, or will you be able to recharge during the day such as in a retail store or a delivery van?

For uses where you need the device to last for a long time without being re-charged, consider whether your preferred device has the option for additional batteries or a larger, extended-use Li-Ion battery pack.  In this case, a device like the latest Samsung Galaxy Xcover Pro with a removable Li-Po 4050 mAh battery may be a good choice.

3. Where will the device be used?

Where the device will be used is another key consideration influencing your choice, especially when picking between consumer-type models or rugged smartphones.

For example, if working in challenging environments such as warehouses, construction sites or distribution centers, a fully rugged device which is shockproof against drops, dust or waterproof may be required to help increase the device’s lifecycle. Other ergonomic features such as form factor and glove touch capability when working outdoors or in all weather conditions might also be important to consider.

Other environments may suit a consumer-type device, such as a luxury fashion store where a slick, high-end device is essential to maintain brand image and an associate might prefer  something they can easily fit in their pocket during a shift. A lower-end, cheaper consumer device might be the best choice when equipping large numbers of staff with devices for low volume scanning tasks in less challenging environments.

When comparing consumer smartphones to rugged smartphones, take into account the following:

  • Built-in camera quality
  • Processing speed
  • Battery life
  • Ease-of-use & Ergonomics
  • Lightweight vs rugged form factor
  • Price point

Get the Guidance and Test Results to Select the Right Android Device for Your Scanning Needs

At Scandit, we understand that choosing the right device is critical to your day-to-day scanning operations. Choosing the wrong device can reduce workforce productivity, increase the total cost of ownership (TCO) and lower your bottom line.

As experts in the field of smartphone-based barcode scanning, we’ve developed our Best Practice Guide to help you compare some of the best Android scanning devices on the market today. So if you are looking to optimise the benefits of smartphones and scanning across your enterprise, it is a great place to help make informed decisions.

If you have specific questions about your needs or your industry, get in touch and one of our experts will be happy to talk to you.