When talking to our clients, we’re frequently asked how Waiterpads compare to tablets for mobile order taking. In this guide, we compare them by talking 6 important things to look at when weighing up the top mobile ordering device for your venue.
The core purpose of a mobile ordering apparatus is to reliably transmit orders to support places for preparation, and the Point of Sale terminal for payment. Wi-fi, a popular and common setup, is the platform which tablet devices utilize. In a normal hospitality environment factors like high profile microwaves, stainless steel regions, mobile phones and wireless laptops, can interfere with wi-fi transmission inducing drop-outs and possibly, lost orders.
Triniteq’s Waiterpad can operate on wi-fi but is more commonly set up to operate on Radio Frequency (RF) that offers a single frequency for ordering, and it contains the least amount of interference and the maximum level of uptime and reliability. Additionally, it has a far greater range so that larger places can send orders from further away such as from multiple rooms and floors. To check the range at your own venue, the Waiterpad comes with an inbuilt range tester to verify receipt of orders at applicable service places.
Since we launched the first Waiterpad back in 2001 we have been hearing the argument that using mobile ordering devices when taking a client’s order causes a lack of involvement with the customer. This is a fair concern thinking about using a mobile ordering device can be compared to using a mobile phone when talking to someone. While the server does have to interact with the device to enter the order, it may be argued that the exact same action occurs when composing an arrangement on paper.
We have discovered that places experiencing success with mobile ordering have recognized that the key lies in coaching staff to keep their hands (and device) behind their back while listening to the purchase and re-establishing eye contact between every purchase input. By training staff how to deal with the device when interacting with the client, the personal service style can be maintained. When comparing the Waiterpad using the pill for levels of consumer involvement, the results are extremely similar.
If you work in hospitality, then you will know firsthand the unforgiving nature of the surroundings. Floors are tough, space is short, people are busy, and damage to hardware can be tough to avoid. Hardware built-for-purpose will obviously last longer.
Most regular tablet devices are adapted for mobile ordering whereas Waiterpad was assembled for the job. Waiterpad comes with a tough, trans-reflective touchscreen (meaning it is readable outdoors), a sound, rubberised outer body with reinforced joins on all four corners for additional durability, and it has been drop tested to 1.5 meters . The Waiterpad can be made up of component parts that can be easily fixed or replaced in a fraction of the cost of the device.
Tablets, on the other hand, are less durable and a fall from 1.5 meters on concrete could probably crack the display or worse. Then you’ll have to determine whether to replace only the screen or the entire unit.
4. Battery life
Most pills have an inbuilt (non-removable) battery. If for some reason a tablet did run out of electricity, on most versions you can not swap out the battery to get a new one. You would have to catch another fully charged tablet, so you’d need a few fully charged spares constantly offered. Additionally, like any mobile phone, as a tablet ages, the battery capacity decreases till, again, you need to replace the entire device.
Waiterpad comes with a removable (and replaceable) 18-hour battery and on every docking station, space for another battery to be charging so you always have a spare, fully charged, and ready to go. Moreover, the docking station daisy-chain feature lets you charge 3 units from 1 powerpoint, so you will never run out of electricity.
5. Increased Productivity
There are enormous benefits to be gained by utilizing mobile ordering apparatus at your venue. By arming your employees with these smart devices, you are keeping them on the ground, in their sections, with your clients. Staff productivity and the level of support is increased while traveling time to send orders to support places is virtually wiped out, requiring less staff to serve more clients. Gain is increased by reducing staff costs and applying on-device, up-sell pushes and while providing real-time inventory availability. Both devices can integrate with Triniteq Stock Manager to get up-to-the-minute stock levels allowing employees to suggest alternatives when something is out of stock. So concerning productivity, there’s not much difference in devices.
6. Screen Size
There’s an evident difference in screen size between the Waiterpad and tablet. Waiterpads are designed to be compact and never get in the way of other obligations a server has to perform and due to this, screen size was sacrificed. This means that product choice and functions are text-based. On the other hand, the bigger screen on the tablet allows images to be used for beverage and food selection which could accelerate ordering, but this causes a larger unit which could be more cumbersome when going around the place.
For fast-paced hospitality environments, the Waiterpad is often the better choice. The dimensions, durability and RF transmission platform make them more reliable, easier to transport and built to last. The cost of this Waiterpad is slightly more upfront but less over time as you factor in replacement costs.
Although tablets are generally used for mobile ordering they are far more suited to stationary roles like a’lite’ version of a mounted POS terminal for counter service in which their size can manage bigger buttons and graphics, and they may be connected to a constant power supply. The initial outlay per pill is usually less but they’re less durable and cost more to replace if they’re damaged.
Naturally, a tablet POS has nowhere near the performance and characteristics of a POS terminal so if you’re considering one or the other for your place, give us a call to go over the distinction between using a tablet as a mobile or mounted POS, and a purpose-built POS terminal.
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