Zebra Technologies. The company’s own description says it well - the company ‘builds tracking technology and solutions that generate actionable information and insight, giving companies unprecedented visibility into their businesses by giving physical things a digital voice.’
The company works in the fields of transportation and logistics, hospitality, healthcare, field mobility, retail, warehouse management, location and manufacturing solutions, which gives companies in these files ‘real-time visibility into everything from products and physical assets to people, providing very precise operational data not only about where things are, but what condition they are in.’
As Zebra explains, ‘this allows business leaders to use data to make better, more informed decisions, respond in real-time and ultimately, help businesses understand how they work, and how they could work better.’
So, what is Zebra’s newest innovation?
A new model of its handheld enterprise-class mobile computer, dubbed the TC8000, with Toll Global Logistics reporting ‘significant productivity gains’ following the TC8000’s adoption at Toll’s Altona distribution centre, something Toll Global did as an alpha-tester with Zebra.
Here’s Zebra’s company video on the TC8000, which serves as an excellent introduction to the product. Two more videos are embedded below, which were filmed at Zebra’s Australian launch event for the TC8000 - the rest of this article also follows.
Zebra says its ‘enterprise-class mobile computer is a landmark innovation in warehousing technology that will drive significant gains in productivity and decrease worker fatigue.’
Not only did Zebra work with Toll Global in Australia, the company also worked ‘with users around the globe to completely re-think, re-design and re-engineer industrial mobile computers based on deep research and human factors analysis.’
Available immediately across Australia and New Zealand, Zebra says its ‘ergonomic and lightweight TC8000 mobile computer offers an innovative design that reduces muscle effort by eliminating the need for “tilt and verify” motions that warehouse workers repeatedly conduct with traditional devices.’
As the company explains, ‘shaving seconds off each repetitive motion can save up to one hour per worker per shift – increasing productivity by an average of 14 percent based on workflow.’
More below, please read on.
Customised Solutions, a service offering of the Toll Global Logistics division that specialises in purpose-built and multi-user warehousing facilities, partnered with Zebra as one of three companies globally to pilot the new rugged TC8000 mobile computer.
The results were proven in the demanding environment of one of Customised Solutions’ Altona distribution centres, where the site has seen a rapid improvement in scanning speed and elevated workforce user experience through the pilot.
During the pilot, the business measured pick performance against existing devices across a sample of users, providing an opportunity for employees to move to the latest digital technology in their everyday operating behaviours.
Here’s the video of the TC8000’s launch in Australia, featuring Zebra’s Senior Technical Director, Wayne Harper followed by Gavin Norman, head of business services as Toll Customised Solutions.
A Q&A video is embedded at the end of this article, some key TC8000 product facts and quotes from Wayne and Gavin are below this video.
KEY TC8000 PRODUCT FACTS:
- The TC8000’s re-engineered form eliminates the need for “tilt-and-verify” motions — usually needed with gun- style scanners — for faster and more productive scanning. The ergonomic design provides a better centre of gravity and is 33 percent lighter than traditional mobile computers, reducing worker fatigue.
- The rugged Android-based TC8000 is compatible with existing business solutions such as Terminal Emulation (TE), voice-directed picking (VDP), warehouse management, price audits and store receiving.
- Zebra’s All-touch Terminal Emulation automatically updates legacy “green screen” interfaces with modern, graphics-based touch screens providing greater usability, increased accuracy and reduced training time.
- The TC8000 is the logistics sector’s first hands-free proximity scanner, users can wear the device in a hip holster, shoulder strap, cart or desktop mount and simply pass items in front to scan.
Gavin Norman, head of business services, Toll Customised Solutions said: “As innovation is a critical part of our culture and customer value proposition, Zebra and its journey in developing the TC8000 are a great fit for us. What we really wanted to achieve was a streamlined operation for our business as well as greater worker experience and productivity across our warehouses.
"The results we’ve seen to-date are very exciting, and we remain passionate about our work with Zebra and our opportunity to innovate further.”
Wayne Harper, senior technical director, Zebra Technologies Asia Pacific said: “We’re thrilled that Toll saw such strong results during the trial of the TC8000 in its facility. With its revolutionary design, the TC8000 mobile computer is the greatest advancement in warehousing technology in more than two decades.
"Companies can expect to boost productivity by 14 percent as the TC8000 will enable workers to be more efficient and deliver more accurate information. Ultimately, this will help businesses operate more profitably.”
Here’s the media Q&A session after the launch event which was captured on video above.