Not really. There is no shortage of people that will play the FUD card (Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt) when it comes to telling people to upgrade their device. The propagators of this FUD typically stand to profit from companies upgrading their equipment or software. If you’re concerned about what happens when your operating system is no longer supported, there are two things you should be aware of:
First, when it comes to mobile devices to manage warehouses, the devices are purpose built. In other words, they are designed to perform specific tasks. The expectation to have devices do more or different things over time doesn’t exist in the warehouse environment. Unlike personal or work computers, or consumer phones, the hardware and operating system is designed to cater to what the user wants to do at any given time. A user’s need will evolve and that can have a demanding effect on the expectations of the operating system. This is not the case with a mobile device in the warehouse.
The second consideration is there is no need for an operating system on a warehouse device to evolve. A mobile computer used in the warehouse is designed to scan and interface with a warehouse management system – that’s generally it. Users of warehouse devices are not installing new applications nor are they downloading files from the internet, as such, mobile devices are not susceptible to the types of security issues and viruses other devices are. Once configured, there is little need, or incentive, to change the purpose of a warehouse mobile device.
Finally, the proof is in the pudding. Windows CE 5 was released in 2004, and Microsoft ended its mainstream support for it a decade ago (in 2009). Yet there are still tens of thousands, likely many more, devices still out in the real world performing daily tasks.
Those concerned about the end-of-life of their operating system shouldn’t lose any sleep, rather, refocus and strive to lower their Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). If it ain’t broke – don’t fix it. Get as much mileage out of your mobile devices as possible.
If you are interested in an Android device or newer Windows device, DMS iTech carries a full line of mobile computers compatible with Warehouse Insight.