Is Sonim Technologies a Good Investment?

Mem-Star Rugged are proud to announce we are a Sonim partner here in the UK.

By partnering with Sonim we hope to be able to provide long-lasting sustainable IT hardware solutions through Somin’s world-beating Ultra Rugged XP8 smartphone and XP5 feature phone.

Who are Sonim Technologies?

Founded in 1999, Sonim Technologies is a leading US provider of ultra-rugged mobility solutions designed specifically for workers who are physically engaged in their work environments. Those are, most often, mission-critical roles and require better robust solutions for communications, data and workflow to increase productivity and improve safety.

Why we chose Sonim, and why you should too.

There are a plethora of smartphones and feature phones on the market, what made us sit up and listen when Sonim approached us?  Simply put, Sonim has the right ethos. Rather than building a device by copying something else, they have chosen to define the standards. As I am always preaching, rugged is more than sticking some rubber on the corners (does anyone remember when Nokia did that? Builders the country over were dropping them into their beers to show off, only to have to get a new phone the next day!!).  Sonim decided from the outset to create durable phones that could aptly be described as ultra-rugged. However, there has never been any ‘hard’n’fast’ rule on what defines ultra-rugged.. So Sonim created their own 12 benchmarks of endurance and mobility.

  • Drop Tested – Not 4 ft onto Plywood but a more realistic 6ft onto concrete from any angle.
  • Temperature and Humidity  – Tested up to 140º F (60º C) and 93.1% humidity
  • Completely sealed against microparticles  to exceed IP6x
  • Stand up to water ingress to exceed IPx8
  • Resistance to Oil and Harsh chemicals  – Whether scrubbed or submerged, tested against Isopropyl, alcohol, bleach, gasoline, benzalkonium, acetone and more
  • Extra loud audio to cope in noisy environments – 100dB+ speaker plus noise cancellation.
  • Daily rigour and usage tested to outlast daily wear and tear – Beyond Military and Industry standards.
  • Puncture resistance – with Gorilla Glass and hardened rubber moulded housing capable of withstanding up to 4J of impact energy.
  • Battery performance for continuous use throughout the day
  • Shockproof – Withstanding sudden shocks of up to 30G and vibrations from 5Hz to 500Hz
  • Glove-friendly display/screens
  • Pressure resistant to a ton of metric pressure – Like being run over by a truck!

But here’s the kicker… Sonim provide, as standard, a 3-year comprehensive warranty!  That is full coverage on everything (except the battery – 1 year), and unlike consumer devices, it is included in the cost of the device. What you pay is all you will pay for 3 years of service.

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Sonim is able to offer a comprehensive warranty because the durability of the device ensures a nearly 3 times lower failure rate. That also demonstrates a substantial lowering of the total cost of ownership without factoring in loss of user time and resources sourcing repairs and replacements.  VDC research showed rugged smartphones delivered a TCO less than half that of non-rugged.

Who uses Sonim devices?

Public Safety – Fire and Police services benefit from reliable communications for a coordinated response. Real One Touch Push to Talk (PTT), built-in band 14 access for dedicated public safety networks, 3-year comprehensive warranty,  day-long battery life, GPS tracking/location, emergency/panic button for PTT all alongside powerful apps and family of usage accessories designed to enhance the user experience in the field.

Healthcare  – The ability to stay connected and sanitised with rugged and reliable devices that are built to be chemically disinfected. From front end medical staff to reception and maintenance personnel, offering a substantial upgrade from pagers and ‘the beep’. PTT, all-day battery life and the comprehensive 3-year warranty make these devices ideal.

Construction – More powerful than the traditional radios with impact, dust and chemical resistance. Ultra-rugged design and long battery life keep crews connected seamlessly whilst maintaining strict site safety protocols. Add in emergency Man-down/lone worker and you have the ability to stay productive and connected wherever the work takes you.

Transportation and Logistics – Effortless device management ensures simple efficient fleet management. Rugged drop-proof reliability with vehicle mounts and charging, One Touch PTT and handsfree compliance, Barcode scanning (XP8), GPS tracking and that 3-Year Comprehensive Warranty!

What devices are available?

Firstly, The Sonim XP5s Feature Phone

Sonim XP5s Rugged PTTAn Ultra-rugged Feature Phone for crisp, clear communication in the field. Survive hazardous and extreme environments with Industry-Leading Rugged Performance Standards, MIL 810G and Non-Incendive Class I, II & III, Div 2 ratings.  Glove-friendly buttons. Enjoy easy, fumble-free communication with large, tactile and intuitive PTT, SOS and Volume buttons and controls. Hear every word even in the noisiest places with Extremely Loud & Clear Audio. Amplify audio and eliminate audio transmission issues with Sonim SecureAudio Connector and Accessories. Enjoy all-day power with Multi-shift Battery Life. Industry Unmatched 3-Year Comprehensive Warranty.

More details including spec and price can be found here – XP5s| Sonim XP5s ultra rugged push to talk handset (memstarrugged.co.uk)

The Sonim XP8 – A smartphone as intelligent and indestructible as can be.

Sonim XP8 Ultra Rugged SmartphoneThe SonimXP8 is ultra-rugged, ultra-smart and ultra-loaded with tough features, productivity tools and unrivalled support that delivers communication you can count on. Android 10 and Google Play. Connect instantly, reliably, every single time with Push-To-Talk.Built to perform in the most extreme environments with IP-68, IP-69, MIL 810G, Non-Incendive Class I, II & III Div 2 ratings. The XP8 is as durable as it gets and all with the full 3-Year Comprehensive Warranty.

More details including spec and price can be found here – XP8 from Sonim Ultra Rugged Smartphone designed for everywhere (memstarrugged.co.uk)

The Sonim XP3plus flip phone is crazy popular in the US but not so admired here in the UK… I am happy to provide details and pricing if this is of interest.

xp3plus

There is talk of a new XP10 device next year too…

How about usability?

Quite often, the device is the first consideration but it is also important to consider how you are going to use the unit. Sonim has put usability accessories at the forefront of product design to allow users to do their jobs efficiently and comfortably.  By maintaining industry standards and partnering with the best of breed specialists, Sonim has brought a host of the best a man can get options. For example, the Klein CURL wired PTT headset® doesn’t insert into the ear, rather the ear hook curls around the ear and the earpiece rests comfortably on the outer ear, allowing for better hygiene. It also has a larger easy access PTT button making it better to use in gloves.

Options include Headsets, RSM (remote speaker microphone – like you see the Police speaking into), Cases, pouches, clips, Vehicle mounts, chargers, extra batteries, screen protectors etc etc

You can find more about the range by downloading the below Accessory catalogue..

SonimXP5s_XP8_Accessories Catalog_2020_R2_LR

Additional Software options?

SonimWare is an essential comprehensive collection of software utilities developed for all areas of device management, from fieldworkers to managers.  Easy to use interface allows device optimisation.  It includes device provisioning, deployment, remote application management, essential updates, troubleshooting, enterprise security, tech support, as well as support for a variety of thrid party applications. The streamlined layout allows easy, scalable and secure device control.

Sonim Scan, for use with the Sonim XP8, turns the device into a leading barcode scanning solution.  It removes the need to carry an extra device and differs from dedicated barcode scanners by not increasing the size and weight of the unit. Although not often recommended for heavy barcoding usage, SonimScan lets you scan up to 45 barcodes per minute! The software temporarily controls the devices’ back camera to capture an image of the barcode (1d or 2d). You can transmit the data into any text field, application or broadcast for deeper integration into a workforce app. Selectable alerts and tones provide confirmation of the successful scan. Yellow, red and/or PTT buttons enable scans with a simple press of a button or floating widget, even whilst wearing gloves. There is an “extra lighting” setting that turns on the camera flash for poor lighting areas, reducing the autofocus time required.

SonimScout, an all in one solution for configuration, management and in-field technical support. As a completely free solution on all XP5 and XP8 devices, it only requires a free Sonim CLOUD account. All the usual features you would expect on an MDM are there. Setup Wizard to improve deployment speed and reduce errors; SafeGuard to provide complete app control and optimisation to help focus and to ensure critical job-related functions are kept to;  MDM helper that controls key areas that are critical to your organisation by setting whether specific devices features are turned on or off or available; App Updater to automatically install ar update applications or inform the user that updates are available; Kiosk mode to keep the simplicity of the look, feel and app access for the user, and reducing on-screen distractions by customising at the admin level for ultimate control.

There are also tools to manage efficiency such as… Call Screening to block unwanted incoming calls and messages using a backlist and outgoing calls and messages to contacts only; Stealth mode that literally allows users to become less conspicuous by reducing screen brightness and changing notification sound when in quiet environments. BLE connect allows for Bluetooth low energy accessories compatibility with your devices. Simplified pairing and PTT accessories work seamlessly without additional development. Contact transfer allows quick transfer of contact details via multiple methods, BT, vCard, CVS and over the air.

Scout remote support gives the ability to troubleshoot and give device guidance to help users get the most out of the device. Users can contact Sonim support via Sonim Chat for quick questions or transition to voice or remote support if needed.  ConimCare allows testing of the core device functionality quickly and easily and then reports directly to Sonim for troubleshooting tips and tricks.