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Hands-free, voice-directed wearable computer for extreme environments

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October 10, 2006

Hands-free, voice-directed wearable computer for extreme environments

Hands-free, voice-directed wearable computer for extreme environments

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October 11, 2006 Enterprise Mobility Company Symbol Technologies yesterday introduced a new wearable mobile computer and scanner system for high-performance computing in extreme environments. Worn on either the wrist or the hip, Symbol's WT4000 series of wearable mobile computers allow users to move freely and scan data, access business-critical information, and accurately perform data entry in real-time. For maximum flexibility, Symbol’s new wearable mobile computer also offers headset support for voice picking.

Designed for warehouse and distribution customers that require hands-free operation, the WT4000 series of wearable mobile computers deliver increased productivity to industrial applications including distribution center order picking, receiving, replenishment, loading, maintenance and repair. In addition, it is well-suited for logistics applications including package sorting and handling.

"Target Express chose Symbol's wearable mobile computers and MC3090 series of mobile computers because they offered all of the features needed to connect our people in real-time and drive our business expansion," said Chris Bale, information technology director, Target Express. "One critical benefit has been the reduction of our integration workload which has been simplified by the fact that Symbol's products are optimized to work together across data capture, wireless data transmission and device management. Symbol's platforming approach also meant that the application work we did earlier this year for the MC3090 mobile computer was easily adapted for the new wearable mobile computer — delivering on the investment protection promise."

Featuring IP-54 sealing rating and the ability to withstand four foot drops to concrete across a range of operating temperatures, the new WT4000 wearable mobile computer system is built to withstand the rigors of everyday use in the most demanding environments including dusty warehouse floors and cold storage freezers. With its hands-free and highly ergonomic design, Symbol’s new wearable mobile computer supports voice-only, text-only and combination voice and text applications to meet the versatile needs of Symbol customers.

"Symbol's new wearable mobile computer and scanner system offers the multi-modal voice and data capabilities necessary to significantly improve warehouse and supply chain operations," said Steve Banker, analyst, ARC Advisory Group. "I believe this new device will not only increase productivity, but will also improve worker satisfaction with a versatile mobile computing tool for a variety of applications."

Symbol's new RS309 and RS409 scanners deliver high-performance scanning and accurate reading of both poorly printed and damaged bar codes. The RS309 wearable scanner delivers a wide scan range for workers picking items to fill orders in the warehouse, and also provides protection from condensation when moving between freezer and non-freezer environments. Positioned out of the way on the back of the hand, the RS309 scanner generally can be worn for a full shift without fatigue.

The RS409 ring scanner offers form and function, allowing unparalleled freedom of movement and versatility in scanning, picking, and sorting applications. The RS409 scanner is a lightweight, rugged device delivering the latest in scanning technology for everyday use both indoors and outdoors. The RS409 can be worn directly on the finger or over a gloved hand, and is ideal for a wide range of applications — from workers processing deliveries in a postal facility to pickers loading cases of produce onto a pallet truck to hospitality workers scanning lift tickets on a ski slope.

"Symbol is the pioneer of the wearable mobile computing category and the new WT4000 series of wearable mobile computers is the result of more than a decade of experience designing, selling and supporting wearable mobile computing products," said Brian Viscount, vice president of product marketing for Symbol's Mobile Computing Division. “With the development of ergonomics that improve user comfort and safety, as well as increased ruggedization, the new WT4000 series is Symbol’s third generation wearable mobile computer and sets the standard for productivity enhancements for workers across a range of warehouse and logistics environments."

Symbol devices are utilized in harsh environments and often subjected to abuse that would cause most other products to fail. Given their importance to business operations, even the most rugged and dependable products require a maintenance plan and a support strategy. The WT4000 series of wearable mobile computers are eligible for Service from the Start with Comprehensive Coverage, which significantly reduces unforeseen repair expenses by covering accidental damage to displays, keypads, and other internal and external components at no extra charge. In addition, Service from the Start Service Center Support agreements help to maximize uptime on the RS309 and RS409 scanners — ensuring customers derive full value from their technology investment.

About the Author
Mike Hanlon After Editing or Managing over 50 print publications primarily in the role of a Magazine Doctor, Mike embraced the internet full-time in 1995 and became a "start-up all-rounder" – quite a few start-ups later, he founded Gizmag in 2002. Now he can write again.   All articles by Mike Hanlon
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