It is hard to imagine life without your smartphone. The smart devices we all carry in our pockets are very popular, making the smartphone the fastest selling gadget ever, outselling personal computers 4 to 1. According to The Economist, more than half of the adult population has a smartphone today and in 2020, more than 80 % will own one. More than 1 million smartphones are produced every day. The development of new products and services in the smartphone ecosystem is also growing. The constant supply of new apps and features is likely to open up for even more usage scenarios. Furthermore, the smartphone of today will be obsolete in less than three years, since the technology is improving rapidly. The reason is simple, the smartphones opens up for productivity increases, reduced costs, increased safety and better informed decisions. This white paper will discuss this topic in detail.
A smart smartphone
A smartphone gets it name for good reasons. It can be used for a wide range of tasks and we have only seen the beginning. As mobile devices get more processing power, become smaller, easier to use and more sensor rich, users will have access to a wide range of value adding applications and services. Tools such as mobility and ERP solutions, image and video capture, security systems, devices management, video conferencing applications, productivity tools, worker monitoring, man down systems, RFID and barcode reading, maintenance systems and inspection checklists to mention a few. In short, you will have new usage scenarios and applications for mobile technology in many industries. This will again lead to increased productivity and reduced costs.
What is driving the adoption?
In addition to the reasons listed above, ever more wireless networks available on remote sites is boosting adoption and the value of the mobile devices. The value of a mobile device increases with the availability of networks it can connect to, such as Wi-Fi, 3G and 4G networks. For example, you can now use video conferencing in the field, and transfer HD video over wireless broadband. This allows you to conduct live video conferencing sessions and stream video live from the field. In this way, you can now solve problems remotely, without having to send experts and technicians to the site. The benefits are obvious, mobile technology saves both travel costs and time. In addition, there are more factors that are driving adoption of mobile devices. Using smartphones in hazardous areas has many usage scenarios and applications.
Usage scenarios and applications
Based on 13 years experience with mobile devices in hazardous areas, BARTEC PIXAVI have been working together with our customers and discovered many areas where a smart device could add value to any operation. Here are some examples of applications you can run on a smartphone and tools that can be replaced by a smartphone.
- Service and Maintenance applications
- Video conferencing and collaboration
- Access to data sheets and information
- ERP and MRP systems
- HR and Management systems
- Lone worker and Man Down systems
- Inventory control and management
- Location Tracking
- Analytics tools
A smartphone can replace many tools
Since the smartphone is equipped with powerful processors, sensors and software, it can be used for a wide range of tasks, effectively replacing tools that is used today. Another benefit is that these tools are now more easily available than ever before, more affordable, and the user experience is better.
- Service and maintenance checklists
- Work orders on paper
- Blueprints and Maps
- RFID and Barcode Scanners
- User Manuals
- Laptops, Tablets, PDAs
- Video conferencing systems
- Telephones, Tetra and UHF
- Man Down and Lone Worker Systems
- Inventory Management Systems
Having established that a smartphone opens up for new ways of working in hazardous areas. We can now summarize the value proposition for having tools that lead to increased efficiency, safety, HSE as well as reduced costs.
Increased efficiency and improved management
- Reduce operational and travel cost
- Remove the need for cabled communication
- Improve maintenance and troubleshooting abilities
- Improved documentation and inventory control
- No need for Hot Work Permits
- Faster access to the right expertise
- Leverage general lack of resources
Improved Safety and HSE
- Fewer people exposed to risks
- Improved inventory control
- Reduced carbon footprint
- Faster access to medical expertise
- Improved safety due to Zone 1 certification
- Better reporting of errors
- Better documentation
One of most easily demonstrated cost reduction tools is video conferencing. Using video conferencing for remote assistance, remote troubleshooting or remote inspection is gaining traction in many industries.
SIPIDO Mobile Telepresence
The Impact X running the SIPIDO Mobile Telepresence app is the only Zone 1 certified HD wireless video conferencing system available. It streams live video and audio in HD over Wi-Fi to any video conferencing system. The Impact X running the SIPID application support standards for Wi-Fi as well as SIP video conferencing standards. SIPIDO have interoperability with most standard based video conferencing systems such as Cisco, Lifesize, Polycom and others. The SIPIDO video conferencing app was designed in cooperation with some of the worlds largest and most demanding customers, ensuring that the product was designed with the end user in mind. This makes the Impact X a very versatile and powerful product, which guarantees ROI.
Demonstrating the value of video conferencing is relatively straight forward. You save cost every time you use the device instead of traveling. Less traveling is not just saving travel costs, but saving the windshield time, ie. the time spent behind a windshield of a car, plane or helicopter. With more complex installation on ever more remote locations, access to expertise is also relevant. Having the right expertise to do the right decision is in some cases critical. Reduced oil price calls for increase efficiency and fewer personnel working offshore, having a good communication tool can help achieve this.
Mobile Device Management
The workplace is becoming increasingly mobile, and people have to use mobile devices in their work. Mobile devices contain sensitive information, and there are several security aspects to consider when devices are taken out of the office. From an IT perspective, you need to maintain a high level of security, availability and flexibility. A Mobile Device Management system ensures that all devices are configured correctly, that necessary security policies are in place. Also, if a device is lost, you can delete all the contents remotely. Having a Mobile Device Management solutions such as Collaboration X onboard will reduce the need for IT support, and free up time for both users and IT managers!
Relevant 3rd party apps
On the Impact X, you can run a wide range of apps, from the 1 M + large Google Play marketplace. Here is a list of relevant apps available today
- SAP work manager
- SAP service manager
- SAP rounds manager
- K9 Email client
- Dropbox, Picasa
- Barcode reader
- Man Down Systems
- Lone worker Apps
- IECEx app
Since technology is developing rapidly, it is important to consider this when choosing mobile technology to be deployed in hazardous areas. You need to be on an updated and modern operating system to gain access to a wide range of security and software updates. If not, your investment could become obsolete and a security risk within just 6 months. Having a future oriented product would be a great benefit. Many of todays mobile devices are running legacy software that are abandoned by the original developer, which causes a significant security risk. Therefore, BARTEC PIXAVI strive towards being future proof. The software and hardware are designed to meet tomorrows demands. We are continuously improving on our products to ensure that the security and user experience is top notch. By keeping track of future developments in technology and in the industry it is possible to foresee what is ahead. Listening to customers to hear what they think will be the next trend is important. One example of this is the additional Wi-Fi security to match enterprise demands. We have encrypted video communication, and created the Collaboration X mobile device management system, ensuring that you have control over all devices in the network. This ensures easy and safe roll out of BARTEC PIXAVI mobile devices in a network.
Whats next? A bold prediction
At BARTEC PIXAVI, we believe that we have only seen the beginning of the smartphone. In a few years, your smartphone will have more processing power and functionality than your computer has today. You will use it for tasks we did not even imagine.
However, there are also security concerns. When you have your phone with you all the time, it is likely to get stolen and you might loose it. Since your phone contains valuable and sensitive information, you need a secure system to manage it, even when you do not have it with you physically. Therefore, we have developed a cloud based Mobile Device Management system called Collaboration X. With this system, you can easily and securely update, find and even wipe the information on the phone when needed.
Customers expect better security and more seamless integration of smart mobile technology in the everyday. We see that the future in mobile computing will be shifted towards wearable technology and technology that works seamlessly without interaction from the user. We will move from looking down at a screen and see that the devices will become a part of its environment. Augmented reality and Google Glass is one example, but there are many other fascinating concepts where the physical and interactive interfaces meet. Smart sensors will become a part of everyday work and life, and these smart devices will all be connected. The devices will become easier to use, more flexible, and have even faster processor and connectivity capabilities. Also, as we surround ourselves with this technology, having secure data communication is increasingly important. Therefore we are working on security and new interfaces for our mobile devices.
Thank you for your interest. Hopefully you will have a better understanding of what benefits can be achieved using innovative and smart technology for hazardous areas. We have only seen the beginning. If you are interested in learning more, check out these links:
- Impact X Intrinsically Safe Smartphone for hazardous area
- Gravity X Intrinsically Safe Camera for hazardous area
- 30-40 % Productivity Increase by using BARTEC PIXAVI and SAP technology in the field
- Choosing mobile device for hazardous area, zone 1 vs zone 2
- Equipment Protection Level explained
- IECEx Zone 1 Wi-Fi for Statoil