What To Look for in a Tablet for Outdoor Work by Paisley Hansen

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More and more, field workers are relying on tablets to complete their jobs. A tablet allows you to perform calculations, take pictures, and communicate with others remotely, along with many other tasks. They are intuitive and portable.

However, not all tablets are appropriate for you to take out in the field. They may not stand up to the environment or the work you have to do for a number of different reasons. When you need a tablet for working outdoors, here are some important qualities to look for.


A tablet that you use in the field may be exposed to extreme temperatures, high drops, and sudden vibrations. These conditions could result in issues such as bent frames and cracked screens in ordinary tablets. To prevent such issues, you need a rugged tablet that boasts the following features to prevent damage: temperature-resistant components, shockproof frames, and reinforced screen protectors. Look for tablets with a military-grade standard for ultimate durability.


While your tablet should be rugged, it still needs to be portable enough so that you can carry it with you throughout the day. This is sometimes a delicate balancing act between a tablet that is lightweight enough not to impose an unreasonable strain yet durable enough to stand up to a rough environment. Tablet weight can range from approximately 1.5 to five pounds, and the width can be seven to 10 inches. You may want to try different tablets on a trial basis before you commit to purchasing one so you can find one that works well for you and isn’t too cumbersome.

Regardless of the size of tablet you end up purchasing, be sure to practice good ergonomics with it. Don’t underestimate the risk of developing repetitive stress injury from holding a device too long in the same position.


Unfortunately, just because you are out in the field with your tablet, it doesn’t mean that you are protected from online attacks. As long as the tablet is connected to the internet, which it typically must be for you to work effectively, it is vulnerable to these kinds of attacks. Not only that but, because a tablet is so small and portable, it could get lost or stolen. This could result in compromise of whatever sensitive data may be stored on the tablet. To keep your tablet safe, you need a virtual private network to set up secure connections, physical security such as biometric scanners to prevent unauthorized users from gaining access, and a firewall to guard against online threats.

Battery Life

It is not very efficient to work outdoors on a tablet if the battery needs to be recharged in the middle of the day. Unfortunately, there are a lot of different factors that can drain even a powerful battery. For example, some apps require more power than others, and the brightness of the screen also makes a difference. If you can’t make adjustments to the way you use your tablet to preserve battery life, you may need to choose one that offers a longer charge. Nine hours should be sufficient.


The physical components of the tablet are referred to collectively as hardware. There are many options available to you but three you need to pay the most attention to. Random-access memory, more commonly referred to as RAM, allows the tablet to run multiple applications at the same time. Storage refers to how many files the tablet can hold. The processor is the main unit that allows the device to compute and „think.“ A faster processor means that the tablet will operate more efficiently.

Operating System

The operating system is the primary software that operates your device. The applications you need to run may dictate which operating system you need because it has to be compatible. In turn, the operating system you need may dictate the type of tablet you need to buy.

As when contemplating any significant purchase, you should consider your individual wants and needs when determining which tablet to buy for your outdoor job.