Lots of news lately on rugged tablets and rugged PCs, but rugged smartphones aren’t quite as plentiful. For the most part, you’re talking about the Casio G’zOne Commando and a few others. And the G’zOne, while rugged enough to withstand an elephant stomping, doesn’t have a barcode scanner. Enter the Honeywell Dolphin 6000 Scanphone, a phone doesn’t quite match the G’zOne in terms of durability, but possesses a myriad of functions field service technicians could find useful.

The Dolphin 6000, which runs on Windows 6.5 Mobile, has a barcode scanner, which makes it unique in and of itself. With field payment moving to mobile devices, being able to scan additional parts is essential for upselling and inventory tracking. And speaking of staying connected to the main office, Honeywell’s new device allows users to manage, update and remotely diagnose all Dolphin 6000 phones within a network from one centralized location. With the Dolphin 6000 Scanphone’s combination of features, Honeywell sounds confident their new device will quickly find a home among the service set.

“We’ve seen an increase in the use of consumer-grade smartphones for enterprise applications as more functionality is added to mobile phones. However, these devices are not specifically designed for enterprise use and do not meet the bar code scanning needs of mobile information workers,” said Taylor Smith, director of product management, Honeywell Scanning & Mobility. “The Dolphin 6000 fills this gap – delivering more reliability, more powerful scan performance and greater line of business application support than any smartphone on the market.”

Other features include:

  • Ruggedness: IP54-rated design tested to withstand four feet drops to concrete; resistant to dust and moisture
  • Photos: 3 MP color camera and a 2.8 inch color display
  • Wireless: Bluetooth, GPS and Wi-Fi capabilities
  • Battery-life: Can run for 8-10 hours on a single charge
  • Reliability: Protected for three years on normal wear and tear and accidental breakage, with five years of post-production support

You might think you’d have to pay quite a bit for a rugged device that’s essentially a phone, computer and scanner all-in-one, and you’d be right. According to CNET, the price range for the Dolphin 6000 looks to be around $500 regardless of where you look. With the trend toward consolidating as many tasks as possible into one device, it remains to be seen whether that kind of price for a rugged device like this is too high, or if service management departments will jump at the chance to put this phone in their technicians’ pockets.

Read more about rugged phones on The SmartVan