DLI Delivers Rugged Dual-Boot Tablet for Retail, Health Care

DLI's latest rugged tablet, the 9000, comes with a five-in-one module to enable mobile payments in a doctor's office or retail showroom floor.

DLI, a maker of rugged mobile devices, has unveiled its new DLI 9000 tablet, which enables salespeople in a retail store or doctor's office staff to handle transactions away from their desks.

A five-in-one mobile point-of-service (POS) module allows patients to take care of payments, such as for medication at their hospital bedside or at home, said Joe Alexander, DLI director of sales.

"It is a product we're targeting in health care," Alexander told eWEEK.

Despite the fact that the patient may not be quite up for it, the tablets allow emergency workers in an ambulance to access patients' insurance documentation and take care of copays on the way to the hospital.

In addition, the tablets can be used by police officers or emergency workers at the scene of an accident to scan documents such as insurance cards and licenses.

Launched on May 21, the tablet runs an Intel Atom Z670 processor, with 2GB of 800MHz DDR2 memory and a 64GB solid state data storage drive. It can handle indoor or outdoor viewing on its 9.7-inch LCD screen.

The unit weighs 1.98 pounds, which is comparable to Motion Computing's 2.1-pound CL900 rugged tablet.

In addition to health care and retail, technicians in the field, such as appliance repairmen, can use the device to take payments.

The five-in-one module consists of a magnetic stripe reader, near field communication (NFC), a debit pin pad, an EMV (Europay, MasterCard and VISA) reader and a bar-code scanner.

Not only can bar-code scanners track retail merchandise, they can also scan the codes on medicine bottles and patient insurance cards. Operating on either Windows or Android, the DLI 9000's dual-boot capability allows users to switch back and forth depending on the app they need to use, Alexander said.

As for wireless connectivity, the DLI 9000 supports WiFi, Bluetooth and Qualcomm's Gobi 3000 mobile broadband technology, which allows users to create their own hot spots.

The RF capabilities of the DLI 9000 can be used to scan a patient's ID card or bracelet in a hospital and import the data into an electronic health record (EHR), Alexander said. The tablets can also scan customer tickets on a cruise line or at an entertainment venue. The device can also run ambulance dispatch software.

Unlike the consumer Apple iPad, which is gaining mass appeal in retail and health care, the DLI 9000 is an enterprise-class tablet with an Ingress Protection (IP) 54 rating for rugged durability, which means it can withstand dust and moisture, Alexander noted.

DLI plans to roll out an antimicrobial plastic shield to guard against spills of fluids in a hospital or doctor's office, said Alexander.

With its impact-resistant casing, the unit can also survive 4-foot drops to concrete. The unit's temperature range provides flexibility for first-response personnel operating in extreme conditions. Users can store the tablet in temperatures of -4 degrees to 149 degrees Fahrenheit and operate it from 0 degrees to 122 degrees Fahrenheit.

As for security, the device enables users to lock down and freeze an image through app-lock software, said Alexander. Images could consist of clinical drug trial documents or a customer's driver's license, said Alexander.

The DLI 9000 will be available by the end of the second quarter of 2012.