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This interview is part of an ongoing Q&A series VDC conducts with AIDC solution providers where they share their views on their company, products, and state of the market. We had the opportunity to catch up with Samuel Mueller, CEO and Co-Founder at Scandit to learn about the company and its recent initiatives.
VDC: Scandit has been a player in the enterprise mobility and data capture space since 2009. Can you briefly introduce the company to our readers and describe the services Scandit provides and solutions you deliver to your customers?
Samuel Mueller: Scandit is the leading enterprise mobility and data capture company, specializing in cloud-based mobile barcode scanning solutions that transform business processes across industries including retail, logistics, manufacturing and healthcare. Using Scandit technology, companies can instantly turn any smartphone, tablet, wearable, drone or camera-equipped robot into an enterprise-grade data capture tool to be used by employees, business partners or customers. A set of cloud-based platform services allows for real-time analysis and reporting across the enterprise, increasing visibility and strengthening decision making by providing actionable operational business insights.
Some key uses of Scandit technology include traditional data capture workflows such as inventory management, track and trace, order entry and mobile point of sale. However, Scandit also enables a wide range of new use cases such as mobile shopping and consumer self-scanning, click and collect or smart pick by vision using digital eyewear.
VDC: Mobility has become a necessity for business activities but many companies are just now beginning to develop a mobile strategy. What do you see as some of the greatest hurdles organizations are facing and how is Scandit helping customers overcome them?
Samuel Mueller: On the hardware side, I see ergonomics, durability and power efficiency being key obstacles for enterprises to overcome — not every device will stand up to work environments. On the software side, I see mobile app development, security and backend integration with existing IT systems to be burdensome for enterprises to adopt. In this context, Scandit closely advises customers on the adoption of best practices including device selection, ergonomics, accessories and system integration, which may include close collaboration with rugged smart device partners such as Samsung, Kyocera or Sonim to ensure the best-possible scan performance.
VDC: How do you see the role of consumer mobile devices impacting the traditional AutoID and enterprise mobility market and the development of solutions?
Samuel Mueller: Smart consumer devices have been affecting the traditional AutoID market for years now. What started out in non-traditional data capture B2C use cases such as mobile shopping, loyalty or consumer self-scanning, has evolved to penetrate the entire supply chain. Software-based mobile data capture now supports, streamlines and transforms traditional AutoID use cases such as asset tracking, picking, pickup and delivery or shipping and receiving. Mobile consumer devices and related platforms present too many benefits to be ignored, and many large enterprises have made commitments to embrace mobility throughout their entire organization.
More and more enterprises will adopt these devices for employees to use, either through enterprise deployments or bring your own device (BYOD) IT models. While the average lifetime of a consumer-grade smartphone may be slightly shorter than a traditional hardware device like a mobile computer or handheld barcode scanner, it allows enterprises to evaluate and upgrade more often, while still maintaining a lower TCO.
Finally, by moving to a modern mobile platform, mobile solutions are easier to maintain and evolve; fixing software is as simple as pushing the latest app update directly to employee devices via a public app store, mobile device or mobile application management infrastructure.
VDC: It appears that most of your customers are leveraging Scandit solutions for B2B applications and workflows? Are you seeing any opportunities for more consumer directed applications that use your solutions?
Scandit enjoys a global and loyal customer base. While many of our customers have either migrated existing AutoID applications to smart device-based solutions using Scandit Flow and our data capture technology stack, or have launched new types of B2E or B2B solutions replacing pen and paper-based processes using either a dedicated or a BYOD-based deployment strategy, Scandit is also powering some of the world’s most popular B2C applications. These include apps for mobile shopping, consumer self-scanning, price comparison, product lookup, shopping lists and gift registries for the world’s leading retailers or independent technology startups.
VDC: Is there anything else you’d like to leave us and our readers with today?
Samuel Mueller: Along with our partners, we support enterprise customers worldwide who are managing the transition to smart devices and mobile apps, helping them to transform their businesses and make them future-proof. By migrating away from traditional handheld scanners and mobile computers to smart device-based data capture solutions, our enterprise clients enjoy better decision-making and reduced costs.
About Samuel Mueller
Samuel Mueller is the CEO and co-founder of Scandit and is responsible for overall strategic direction, marketing, sales and business development.
Prior to Scandit, Samuel was a management consultant and project leader for multinational companies such as Swiss Airlines, Swiss Re and IBM as well as a corporate researcher at the renowned IBM Zurich Research Lab. While at IBM, Samuel was awarded an IBM Research Division Award and a total of three IBM Invention Achievement Awards. He has authored numerous patent applications and has published his research results in leading conferences and journals.
Samuel holds a PhD from ETH Zurich and graduated summa cum laude with an MSc in Computer Science and an MA in Financial Economics, both from the University of Zurich, Switzerland.
(with Richa Gupta, Director)