Motorola MobileVisor

February 26, 2010

A couple years ago I made a post about the Motorola ScanVisor, a slick way to do quick Moto barcode scanner comparisons. Anytime you can find out the real actual differences between the LS9208 and LS9203 more than one has a tilty base has got to be a good day for buyers. Moto took this idea and applied it to their mobile computing line, so now there is the Motorola MobileVisor, and I think that’s fantastic.

Purchasing a mobile computer is an incredibly expensive ordeal and should never be taken lightly. Personally, I’d be really hesitant to drop two grand on something unless I knew for certain it was right for me. So with the MobileVisor, you can compare the MC55 and MC75 and see a solid breakdown of the differences, far more than “This one is black and this one is gray.” You can learn all sorts of crazy stuff, like that the MC5590 has a 520 MHz processor while the MC75 rocks out at 624 MHz. And I just now realized those mobile computers are faster than the iMac I used through most of college.

And much like the ScanVisor, MobileVisor lets you breakdown product listings by your industry, so you can look for the right mobile computer to use in a truck that hauls petrochemicals, or the health care mobile computer that is ideal for doctors who perform only appendectomies. Totally spelled appendectomies correctly on the first try. Count it.

Unitech HT680 Mobile Computer

February 23, 2010

Our Unitechnician friends recently showed off this new mobile computer and it definitely looks like it bridges some gaps and creates synergy and other buzzwords that make it fancy. It’s the Unitech HT680, and it’s a pretty beefy yet not wicked expensive unit.

The HT680, to me, seems like an in-between on their big tough PA line and their itty bitty batch device line. Kind of like the Hercules of the Unitech Pantheon. It comes standard with Windows CE 5.0 Pro, a 520 MHz processor, and 128 MB RAM / 512 MB Flash. So it may not be as much of a powerhouse as the PA600, but it’ll get the job done for most folk. There’s also an expansion slot for miniSD cards which can add up to 4 GB of Flash storage in case you want to load a rather large product database, or maybe a couple movies, onto the HT680 for later perusal.

For scanning, you get your choice of a 1D laser scanner or 2D imager, so you don’t have to pay for functionality you don’t really need. It’s also set at an angle from the device, much like the Honeywell Dolphin 6100, so it’s no sweat to scan barcodes while still staring at the screen.

All the units have Bluetooth v. 2 built-in, and come with an optional 802.11b/g radio in case you need to VOIP it up or update your facebook status while driving your forklift. I guess there are more legit applications, like hooking in to the central database to post and retrieve updates while on the job, so you don’t accidentally send 100 copies of “From Justin to Kelly” out to some poor soul.

The design on the HT680 makes it relatively tough, and so you should be safe letting even clumsier people use it. Like most mobile computers kickin around out there, the HT680 sports an IP54 seal, which means dust and splashes of water can’t get in to the electronics, or makes it sneezeproof. And through some combination of light internals (11.2 ounces, so svelte!) and sturdy design, this badboy can withstand drops of 6 feet to concrete. It’s the only Unitech mobile computer that can do that!

After Honeywell bought HHP and Metrologic, they ended up with a few products that overlapped. And nobody wants overlapping products, it causes split ends. So they’ve been slowly whittling away the excess products, getting their catalog into lean, mean, fighting machine status. The current round of end of life products are from the Metrologic side, and their replacements more than make up for this loss. There’s a handy dandy table at the bottom of the post if you’re really looking for more info.

VoyagerHD & VoyagerPDF: While these scanners provided pretty solid features for Metrologic (4 mil barcode scanning capability and a laser scanner capable of reading PDF417 barcodes, respectively), the HHP products and even newer Metrologic products did the same and for about the same price. VoyagerHD can be replaced by the high density VoyagerGS, which is a better all around laser scanner. For the VoyagerPDF, they recommend getting the 3800g PDF scanner. For its price, nothing beats the 3800g lineup.

MS1890 Industrial Focus: I felt bad for this product. It came out right before the merger, and half of HHP’s lineup does the same with greater cachet. The 4800i industrial 2D scanner should replace the industrial focus and then some.

MS7320 InVista: Pretty glad this is getting replaced by the Solaris, since we have a solid video showing off how amazing it is.

MS2320 StratosE: For a while I’m pretty sure there were about 8 different Stratoses (Stratii?) Thankfully, they’re whittling it down to the best and the brightest. The MS2420 Stratos is the new replacement and that thing is a beast.

IS1650 Focus: We never really listed this scanner, mostly because it’s designed for automation and we’re big into point of sale. It’s like a Focus with the handle knocked off, but they make better products and now it’s done for. The MS4980 VuQuest is replacing it, and that scanner’s pretty fast so good on them.

And here’s the handy chart!

If You Had: You Will Want:
VoyagerHD VoyagerGS HD
VoyagerPDF 3800G PDF
MS1890 Industrial Focus 4800i
MS7320 InVista MS7280 Solaris
MS2022 StratosE MS2420 Stratos
IS1650 Focus MS4980 VuQuest

So I made the words for this and didn’t think it’d go live, but hey, it’s out there for sale and buying stuff is great, right? The relatively new Datalogic Gryphon I GBT4100 is out there and ready to buy, and it has a fantastically long name.

The Gryphon BT is a new premium cordless barcode scanner. I didn’t know there were premium barcode scanners, but this is one of them. It uses a Bluetooth 2 radio to maintain contact with the base station or bluetooth-equipped device, giving you about 98 feet of radio range. If you happen to get out of range, the Gryphon can switch into a batch scanning mode, storing up to 1,200 barcodes in on-board memory.

What I really dig about this scanner (yeah, serious) is that the charging cradle has an adjustable base that allows the Gryphon BT to act as a presentation scanner as needed. It’s kind of a spendy scanner, so the dual-purpose style really makes it a better choice than buying a cheap presentation scanner and a cheap cordless scanner. And if you’re using your checkstand, I doubt you’re going to want a coworker toddling around your business cordlessly scanning whatever he feels like.

Datalogic rocks the green spot technology on the Gryphon, much like most of their scanners. This makes it pretty solid for the hard of hearing, people in loud places, or people in quiet places where an annoying *BEEP* could illicit glares over library books. And when it’s in the cradle, the green spot turns on automatically, so you have a glowy indicator of where the sweet spot is for scanning. It’s like a little stage on which your barcode may perform.

Loud businesses like garden centers and lumber mills could get away with the Gryphon BT and its green dottiness, and the added ingress protection seal and reinforced body make it a little tougher than some of the cheaper scanners on the market. An IP52 seal can keep water splashes and dust out, with the 5 meaning that windblown dust (saw or otherwise) won’t get in to mess up the electronics, and the 2 referencing the Gryphon’s skill at keeping a light drizzle or splish splash of water out. To keep it safe from clumsy employees, Datalogic built the Gryphon to withstand 6-foot drops to concrete, so even Bird Man Chris Anderson can’t really break it if he drops it.

In conclusion: If you are a tall, clumsy person, and you work in a library, the Datalogic Gryphon I GBT4100 is the scanner for you. If you’re short and adept, this barcode scanner is still pretty radical.

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