If you use an iPad or an iPhone, DAP Technologies' new M9000 tablet computer will look mighty familiar to you. The big, colorful screen uses the same kind of touch-and-drag technology and colorful, easy-to-read graphics as those consumer devices.
Users can choose a conventional keyboard or a virtual keyboard that appears on screen. With the virtual keyboard setting, users can choose which segment of the keyboard will appear on screen with a touch of the finger—for example, just the function keys, just the alpha keys, just the numerical, or all three. It can be mounted horizontally or vertically, and the screen image shifts automatically to match when sensors detect a new orientation.
When forklifts can't go into an area of a warehouse, drivers can remove the truck-mounted tablet and bring it with them, then use a built-in bar-code scanner before returning to the truck.
DAP Technologies unveiled the new computer at the ProMat 2011 show in Chicago. The company also previewed its M1000 rugged handheld The small device is not much bigger than a cell phone and weighs just 8.5 ounces. It can scan bar codes and RFID tags and take manual input data. It will be available for sale later this year.