DT Research DT307 |
7-inch, 1.1 pound, capacitive touch Windows CE/Mobile tablet for point-of-sale, field service, etc.
(by Conrad H. Blickenstorfer)
Announced May 18, 2013, the DT307 is the smallest and lightest of a large roster of vertical market tablets offered by San Jose, Calif. based DT Research. Designed for duty as a light but very durable data capture and computing device in point-of-service/sale applications, inventory management, and field services, the DT307 can be configured with a magnetic stripe reader, barcode scanner and RFID reader.
What customers get with the DT307 is 1.1 pound tablet (i.e. less than an iPad) that's also remarkably thin (0.7 inches). And, unique in the DT Research tablet lineup, the DT307 runs Windows CE 6.0 or Windows Mobile. And while the rest of the DT Research tablet lineup uses resistive digitizers, the DT307 has capacitive touch.
The DT307 is powered by an unspecified ARM processor running at 800MHz, has 512MB of RAM and 4GB of Flash storage. A micro SD card slot inside the battery compartment can accommodate up to another 8GB of storage. The 7-inch display uses a 5:3 aspect ratio wide format with 800 x 480 pixel WVGA resolution. While Windows CE/Mobile wasn't designed for capacitive touch, most users will likely run touch-optimized custom applications.
DT Research doesn't list ruggednes specs for the DT307, but with a tough ABS + PC plastic housing, the DT307 can probably take a good deal of abuse. Unlike the rest of the company's tablet lineup, this one doesn't come with distinctive rubber bumpers on its corners (they would interfere with the integrated mag stripe reader).
Of the many available options some are internal (like the available 3-megapixel camera and the RFID reader, some are integrated into the design (like the mag card reader), and some snap on (like the 2D imager).
The use of Windows CE or Windows Mobile makes the DT307 somewhat unusual in the world of tablets where people generally get iPads, Android devices, or tablets with full Windows. By comparison, Windows CE/Mobile goes way, way back, but that doesn't mean it's obsolete. In fact, even as of this writing (May 2013), most industrial handhelds continue to use Windows CE or Windows Mobile (now usualy known as Windows Embedded Handheld). Microsoft's small OS platform is a known commodity, fits well into the enterprise, and it's quick and lean, and that goes for the DT307 as well..
How do the tablets in DT Research's current tablet lineup differ? They mostly use the same or very similar electronics, but display sizes (7 to 10.4 inches), aspect ratios (standard 4:3 or wide), and resolutions (800 x 480 to 1024 x 768) vary. Most are in the 2-3 pound range, All offer good protection via large rubber bumpers, but ruggedness specs vary, as does the availability of options such as RFID, mobile broadband, cameras, etc. For good overview of the DT Research lineup, see the DT Research tablet summary, their very informative page on optional features and technologies, and their handy comparison feature.