Case Study - Social Mobile and MediaTek

Mar 10, 2021
Social Mobile T8 Blog Hero 0321

Though food pick-up and delivery has traditionally been an ancillary feature of the food service industry, the COVID-19 pandemic, and the resulting countrywide social distancing guidelines, have combined to force a Darwinian evolution on that business model, and how quickly restaurants were able to pivot was a decisive factor in their survival. Thankfully, the culture of “food on demand” had already become globally entrenched in most modern societies, meaning restrictions on in-person dining need not sound a death knell for restaurants everywhere. With the success of the entire food delivery industry dependent on the continued existence of the food service business, it was imperative that food delivery companies facilitated a swift and efficient pivot from a traditional indoor dining model to one focused exclusively on pick-up and delivery service. This endeavor necessitated a simple, efficient, streamlined onboarding process, allowing restaurants balancing on a precarious cliff of uncertainty to engage in a swift transition into this digitally driven pick-up and delivery model. As a result of the rapid and dramatic societal shifts, the food-on-demand industry quickly became the ventilators of the culinary world, keeping restaurants alive in a climate that would have otherwise quickly led to their demise.

The food-on-demand business operates on a complicated model that needs more than just delivery drivers to function. Unsurprisingly, digital technology has emerged as an absolutely integral part of this new day-to-day restaurant business model. For example, each time a food delivery company onboards a new restaurant, they provide that restaurant with a tablet that is used to transmit orders from the company’s app to the kitchen where the order will be prepared and eventually fulfilled via delivery. Additionally, a restaurant may choose to contract with multiple food delivery companies, necessitating the deployment of multiple tablets in one location. This creates a heavy dependence on readily available, reliable technology and without that existing infrastructure and communication network, a restaurant would not be able to accept or fulfill orders, let alone with speed, accuracy, and efficiency.

Until recently, the food-on-demand industry has relied almost exclusively on the procurement of expensive, off-the-shelf consumer grade devices to fulfill their technology needs. But, the shorter shelf life inherent in consumer devices often equates to early obsolescence of these devices, and in turn, more time spent by internal IT teams to validate, setup, and support new models as they are rolled out. In addition, heavy demands for these consumer electronics has created a market already under constraint, making it very difficult for restaurants to procure the volume of devices needed from the big brands currently on the market.

Thankfully, Social Mobile offers restaurants and food delivery companies an ideal solution. They have recently brought to market their own 8” enterprise grade tablet, dubbed the T8, as part of their Rhino brand portfolio of enterprise private label devices. The T8 was built tough to withstand high traffic areas and intense environments, like a hot and crowded kitchen. The device is GMS Certified, and meets Google's extensive Android Enterprise requirements, such as Android Zero Touch. The T8 also offers the availability of a global SKU, and comes with LTE bands built-in to support world-wide operations. The device is T-Mobile certified (and available through the T-Mobile sell-with program), with a baseline PTCRB that allows for certification on most telecom carriers. And because of Social Mobile’s vertical supply chain integration, the T8 can be privately labeled in all respects, from the physical device itself to the packaging and collateral. In sum, this device is perfect for any organization looking to quickly deploy a low-cost and high-quality solution.

“When approached by these food-on-demand companies looking for a readily available device that met their requirements for budget and reliability, we were able to provide a clear solution in our Rhino T8, and offer additional benefits including extended hardware availability, 3 years of software support and, naturally, full Android Enterprise support,” said Jason Bayton, Chief Product Officer of Social Mobile.

When creating the device, Social Mobile drew a gentle balance between optimum performance and intuitive form factor for maximum adoption. The components inside the device were carefully selected by Social Mobile and partners to ensure the device has 3-yr availability on a global basis—meaning manufacturing had to be scalable to facilitate mass deployment as needed.

Social Mobile and MediaTek, a company that has a proven track record of enabling millions of consumer and enterprise devices, have a long-standing partnership. Working together, MediaTek’s team of dedicated experts helped Social Mobile bring the vision of the T8 project to life, helping the T8 achieve both PTCRB and T-Mobile certification.

The T8 is powered by MediaTek’s i500P cellular IoT chipset. “The T8 tablet is a great example of Enterprise IoT device powered by MediaTek’s IoT platform that delivers powerful edge processing, connected touchscreen displays, advanced multimedia capabilities and fast connectivity, all supported in a highly integrated and power optimized package,” said Sunil Chhugani, Director, US Business Development, MediaTek. “We are proud to collaborate with Social Mobile, an IoT Ecosystem partner, and look forward to enabling them for the Enterprise segment.”

“We continue to see significant demand within the food delivery industry to keep bringing to market new and innovative solutions built on MediaTek’s IoT portfolio. Working with MediaTek has allowed us to bring to market many ‘first-ever’ devices, and we look forward to our ongoing partnership as we continue to introduce new SKUs to our Rhino Portfolio”, said Robert Morcos, CEO of Social Mobile.

Since inception, Social mobile has been a trusted source for clients across verticals that are looking for a partner with a proven track record of bringing innovative enterprise products to market. Social Mobile has a history of recognized thought leadership in the enterprise space, known for creating unique form-factors and achieving Google Mobile Services (GMS) certification for its many “first-ever” devices. Social Mobile remains proud of its work with the food delivery industry, helping an industry that has grown exponentially in both market share and importance during the COVID-19 pandemic facilitate an effective transition to a new model.

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