New Products for Mobile Workers -- March 2007

— March 01, 2007

Looks can be deceiving. Toshiba proves as much with its TDP-FF1AU multimedia projector, a paperback-sized powerhouse that weighs about a pound but can project images as large as 68 inches. Energy-efficient LEDs that can last up
to 10,000 hours drive the projector's light source, so there's no need to warm
it up or cool it down (thus eliminating the need for a fan). The battery-run
projector can be used anywhere, and it's compatible with many mobile phones, notebooks and USB memory sticks. Price: $699.

The Need for Speed
Burn some rubber on the information superhighway with the Sierra Wireless AirCard 595, the first mobile broadband card compatible with Verizon Wireless' EV-DO Revision A network. The AirCard 595 features a built-in, non-moveable antenna and an external antenna port. It offers data transfer speeds of 3.1 Mbps on downlinks and 1.8 Mbps on uplinks, offering users almost immediate access to large files such as business presentations or photos. The AirCard 595 also works in areas where EV-DO Revision A networks are not yet available (though speeds will be slower there). Price: $99 (after $50 rebate).

A Clear Conference
Setting up impromptu conference calls can be tough. But with the pocket-sized Aura Mobile BT, calls can be set up and held from anywhere--in a car, on a tradeshow floor or even at the beach (we won't tell). The device is plugged into either a headset jack on a cordless phone, to a computer using VoIP or to a Bluetooth-enabled cell phone. Once connected, the Aura Mobile BT adjusts background noise levels to deliver sound that is clear enough to be heard from an airport, hotel lobby or the front seat of a convertible. Price: $150.

Goodbye, Dropped Calls
Understanding the importance of good cellular reception, ARC Wireless has developed the Freedom Antenna, a wall- or window-mounted personal antenna that helps reduce dropped calls, static and, to varying extents, frustration. With a frequency range of 800 MHz to 3 GHz, the Freedom Antenna can be set up anywhere and is compatible with more than 200 types of cell phones, including the top 10 selling phones in the U.S. It's also able to support PCS, GPRS and future 3G cellular protocols, as well as WiFi, wireless LAN, Bluetooth and other high-speed data hookups. Price: $34.95.

A Phone for All Systems
SpectraLink designed its latest product with retailers, in particular, in mind. The NetLink Softphone Application turns mobile devices into fully functional business telephones. The program runs on Microsoft Windows 5.0 and PocketPC operating systems and can integrate with not only telephones but systems for inventory, supply chain and CRM, allowing retailers to stop juggling PDAs, cell phones, handheld scanners and business phones and stick with just one device. Price: Based on enterprise-wide licensing agreement.

Optimum Scanning
The PHL 7000 Series Advanced Portable Data Terminal from Opticon features several communications options, including Bluetooth, WiFi and GSM/GPRS protocols. The device lets users choose between standard laser, long-range laser and 2D CMOS scan engines, making it ideal for deployment in field logistics applications, retail inventory, route delivery, field sales and field service. Plus, its rugged design makes it tolerant of dust, moisture and 5-foot drops to concrete. Price: Starts at $1,500.

Hearing Is Believing
Beyond its good looks, the new Scala-700 Bluetooth headset has several compelling features to recommend it. One is its ability to connect to two different phones and switch between them at the touch of a button. Another is the audio adapter, which plugs into a computer's USB port, enabling the headset to perform hands-free voice control of phone calls on the screen of a desktop or notebook. And then there's the location buzzer, which is activated from your cell phone and causes the device to start buzzing, saving you the trouble of wondering where you put that tiny device. Price: $79.95

All in a Day's Work
"All in one" is a good way to describe the MRT320 Series Terminal: It features an embedded barcode scanner, a thermal printer and an integrated three-track magnetic strip reader. Ideal for field sales and service professionals, the MRT320 enables users to check inventory, take payments, deliver goods, print receipts, complete transactions and report progress from the field. The device can even be counted on to perform a full day's work--its Lithium Ion battery can run up  to 10 hours on a single charge. Price: $1,250.

Picture of Health
The SafeBook from Devon IT is one healthy notebook. Built without a hard drive, this client laptop is immune to computer viruses, spyware and data theft, making it ideal for mobile professionals in regulated industries where data security is a major concern. Applications used on the SafeBook are stored directly on remote servers that authorize access through Citrix ICA or Microsoft RDP protocols and are accessed via Ethernet or broadband connections. With no data to access, the SafeBook is safe from would-be thieves, and without a "computing brain," IT managers can be sure company-sensitive data stays right where it's supposed to be. Price: $799.

Note-Taking Made Easy
Want an easier way to take notes? Try mimio Capture, a portable device that attaches to any whiteboard, digitally records notes and drawings, and stores the information in your PC or Mac. The captured data can be saved, shared or integrated into other materials. When it's connected by computer to the Internet, mimio Capture can broadcast whiteboard sessions in real time. Without an Internet connection, the sessions can be projected onto a giant screen, provided the computer is  connected to a projector. Computers are not essential to mimio Capture, either: It can record whiteboard presentations by battery and later be connected to a PC. Price: $799.

Designed for Comfort
Using a laptop is convenient, but it's not always comfortable. Logitech hopes to change that with its Alto one-piece notebook riser, a device that levels the notebook screen with your eyes and offers an alternative to cramped laptop keypads. The stand opens like a book; a full-sized integrated keyboard is on one side and an angled platform (for the notebook) is on the other. It also features three built-in USB ports for connecting peripherals such as printers or webcams. Assembly is quick (less than 30 seconds, according to Logitech) and storage is quicker--just fold it in half. Price: $99.99.

Secure, But Functional, Too
The Citizen CMP-10 mobile receipt printer offers the convenience of real-time efficiency, plus customer peace of mind--transactions can occur without the credit card leaving their sight.
The 12-ounce printer quickly produces receipts, delivery slips, tickets and credit card/debit transactions on the go, and it features an integrated magnetic stripe reader and a triple interface that provides Bluetooth and IrDA wireless connectivity. The CMP-10 lithium-ion battery provides up to 40,000 lines of print, runs for 16 hours on a single charge and has a three-hour recharging time. And for added flexibility, it ships with Windows 2000, XP, Mobile, CE .NET and Pocket PC drivers. Hooked to a belt loop, the CMP-10 can be taken anywhere at a moment's notice, making it well-suited for industries such as retail and food and beverage delivery. Price: $612. .


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