Migrating to a new operating system for handheld devices might not be the most exciting thing on your to-do list. However, it is critical that companies form a migration plan now that Microsoft is in the first stages of ending the life of its mobile operating systems. 

Times are changing in the industry as a result. Windows Embedded Handheld 6.5 was the most widely deployed mobile OS in the world. Since Microsoft has decided to leave the enterprise market, companies must create a migration plan that will avoid any issues with operations and service.

Informs recommends Zebra Technologies products powered by the Android OS. This article will help you figure out when you need to make a switch and describe some of the benefits that Zebra Androids can bring to your business.

Microsoft’s End of Support for Windows Embedded

There are two key designations for Microsoft leaving the mobile OS market.

The first is “End of Support.” Microsoft will stop issuing security patches and software updates when it ends support for an OS. If you are still using the OS to run devices, there is not a Microsoft solution for virus defense, software bugs, or the adding of new apps.

Apps will need to be rewritten before any deadlines for a new OS. If you are in a regulated industry, this is an issue where you must pay close attention.

The second designation is “End of Life,” when Microsoft will cease service of the OS.

Here are the key dates for Microsoft “End of life” in the mobile OS market:

July 9, 2019 – Windows Embedded 8.1 Handheld will be End of Life

January 14, 2020 – Windows Embedded Handheld 6.5 will be End of Life

Zebra and Google’s Android

Since Zebra Technologies provides devices and other solutions in many industries, it made sense to seek out other possibilities when Windows support ceased to exist.

When it looked like Microsoft was going to leave the mobile OS market, Zebra Technologies started working with Google on a possible alternative. Google’s Android OS had gained popularity since its inception in 2010 and was seen as a possible solution.

One factor that was of concern with Android was security. Zebra and Google strengthened Android for enterprise hardware devices by creating secure architecture.

Why Android

Android made sense for Zebra, in part, because of the many benefits it provides its users.

Android is the world’s most popular OS and is cost-effective. It’s likely that many of your employees already use Android on their smartphones and other devices. Since its inception, Android has become the dominant mobile OS in the world.

One interesting stat on Android: It’s on four of every five consumer handheld devices. You can expect similar numbers for enterprise someday soon as companies now migrate to new devices and a new OS.

Security and the protection of sensitive data are always important when dealing with an OS. Zebra has strengthened the Android with its Mx Technology; this means it is uniquely hardened for enterprise use. The Android devices are optimized for demanding enterprise environments.

The devices powered by Android have data and apps protected by app locks, risk protection, and government-grade encryption.

Android is an agile OS and easy to customize. It has a large development community for apps and is flexible for adapting to the unique demands of enterprise applications.

Zebra includes its Mobility DNA suite of workforce mobility apps with its devices. The suite simplifies device management for enterprise. These enterprise-level apps are fully customizable.

With the Mobility DNA suite, your apps will have greater connectivity through workspaces. Your developers will be able to customize your apps to fit your needs.

Finally, from the looks of it, Android has staying power. Microsoft’s decision caught many by surprise. However, Android has been around since 2010, and its developers have continued to optimize the OS for enterprise uses. If you use a device with Android OS, it’s a safe bet it will be with you for quite some time.

Products for Your Industry

Whether it’s manufacturing, transportation and logistics, or warehousing, Informs can help you with your migration to a new OS.

Here is a quick overview of just a few of the Zebra products designed for your industry:

The TC8000 mobile computer can help workers with inventory management, supply line replenishment, maintenance/repair operations, and compliance verification.

The ET55 tablet is rugged and can resist drops, water, and dust. It has 4G connectivity, so you can put it to work just about anywhere you’ll need it.

The TC52 and TC57 touch computers are not only rugged for tough environments like manufacturing, but also have the intelligence level of your cell phone. You get world-class data capture, advanced touchscreen technology, and safe, secure Wi-Fi with cellular network flexibility.

Our consultants and engineers can help you find the right devices for your needs or answer any questions you have about the transition you need to make soon.

Call us at 616-399-7010 or email us at info@informsinc.com to get started.