White Paper

White Paper: Reduce Costs, Increase Productivity And Protect Profitability Through More Efficient Battery Management

Source: Motorola

Motorola's unique new battery offers an industry first — an integrated display that provides state of charge and state of health. The resulting real-time battery information enables better battery management, reducing battery related costs and protecting end user uptime.

The challenge — the high cost of inefficient battery management
For mobile computer users, proper battery management is just as important as the performance of the mobile computer itself. Lack of battery power can affect everything from customer service to profitability — and in some cases even human lives. First responders and military personnel rely on voice-enabled mobile computers for critical communications as well as the collection of crucial data. Direct store delivery (DSD) drivers depend on mobile computers to complete on-the-spot order processing and invoicing. Field maintenance personnel count on mobile computers to access information required to service business-critical equipment. And salespeople count on mobile computers to check inventory, pricing and place orders.

In order to ensure full shift operation, users need to start the day with a battery that is not only fully charged, but also healthy enough to hold a full charge. But charging status is often not easy to access, and information on the health of the battery is typically non-existent. While battery charging status is typically visible whether batteries are charged in a standalone battery charger or in a mobile computer that is in a charging cradle, it is not intuitive or easy to determine the state of charge or state of health once batteries are placed into the battery pool, such as a pile or bin. In addition, the health of the battery is typically determined in an informal fashion through trial and error — users discover that a fully charged battery did not last as long as expected, and may or may not remember to report that fact at the end of the shift. The lack of easy access to real-time battery information can result in the selection of a battery with a partial charge, or a battery that is no longer capable of holding a full charge. Either of these events can result in device and user downtime in the field, which could be costly.

To ensure ample battery power for a full shift, enterprises typically maintain a battery pool large enough to allow users to carry a minimum of one spare battery at all times — with additional spares to compensate for aging batteries that have not yet been identified and removed. However, in an economy where businesses are pressured to cut costs, this approach increases capital and operational costs. In addition to the cost of the batteries, there is the time and effort required to manage and maintain a larger battery pool, the time users spend managing batteries and the impact of downtime in missioncritical mobility applications when battery power is not available.