Revisiting Single Application and Kiosk Mode for Enterprise and Personal Use

For many years, businesses have relied on self-service kiosks to increase their profit and value. As these kiosks are mostly used in self-service environments to perform predefined services without employee’s physical presence, it enhances productivity and reduces costs. However, putting dedicated kiosks everywhere as standalone devices can be quite expensive for small enterprises. Thankfully, technology itself has a solution by allowing the corporate-owned devices such as tablets, iPads, mobile devices or any off-the-shelf devices to be converted into a Kiosks, helping businesses save on infrastructure cost.

Many mobile devices manufacturers like Google & Apple are providing an inbuilt feature called kiosk mode & guided access in their devices respectively, which help restrict user access to a single or few specific applications and browsers. Kiosk mode prevents users from accessing or running other applications apart from the pre-defined content visible on the screen. This feature helps small business owners and individuals save on infrastructure costs as they don’t need to put up separate kiosks. Running a device on Kiosk mode also helps ensure safety and security of corporate as well as personal data and devices. By following few simple steps, corporate-owned devices can be converted into kiosks.

Kiosk Mode

Kiosk mode can be used by an Individual or by Industries for various purposes. A brief description is given under:

The role of Kiosk mode in Personal/Independent use:

The world relies on mobile devices for communications, work, and entertainment. It’s quite possible that kids and elderly people may have a natural curiosity to understand and experiment with new technologies. Their eagerness may invite safety concerns for parents and family members. For such circumstances, kiosk mode can be a boon, providing controlled access to mobile devices. Parents can use kiosk mode to lock down unwanted apps/browsers in the device, and allow only age-appropriate apps for kids’ usage. It can also help in preventing unintentional or accidental destruction or deletion of data from the devices.

The role of Kiosk Mode in various Industry Platforms:

Kiosks have done extremely well in various industries such as Healthcare, Education, Hospitality, Retail, Transportation, and Logistics. However, they require a substantial set-up cost. Single application mode or kiosk mode is a feature provided by many mobile companies, enabling conversion of mobile devices into kiosks. Some authentic uses of kiosk mode as per different industries are given below:

Healthcare:  The Kiosk market has benefited the Healthcare sector tremendously. It’s been embraced by many healthcare organizations, hospitals, retail healthcare clinics and by various healthcare programs as well. Putting dedicated kiosks in hospitals might put a strain on hospital budgets. Instead of converting any mobile devices owned by the hospital into kiosk mode saves a lot of money and time. Also, kiosk mode is crucial where brick and mortar facilities are scarce such as homeless shelters, community centers etc. For specific healthcare programs, nurses/medical assistants can simply turn mobile devices into kiosks and give them to patients for use. These devices can be used to collect, store and track patients’ data, allowing patients to be treated with fewer errors that may occur in a manual system. Also, the devices can be programmed to allow patients to pay their medical expenses by simply feeding their credit card information into the device.

Colleges & Schools: Smartphones and tablets are transforming the processes of teaching in educational institutions. The use of mobile devices not only streamlines e-content but also enhances the student’s ability to grab content better. No doubt, new technologies can help provide better pedagogy in colleges/schools, but at the same time, there are several issues about smartphones and tablets being the biggest distractions in learning. Misuse of the device by students like playing games, watching videos, accessing social networking sites, downloading restricted apps, clicking pictures etc., which might be prohibited in the college and school premises are some of the points of dispute. Kiosk mode is an effective way to lockdown unwanted browsers/apps on the devices and allows only specific content that institutes want to be visible on the screen.

Hospitality & Restaurant: The Hospitality industry constantly looks for solutions which enrich customer experience and ensure an unforgettable experience for guests. Kiosk mode in tablets and mobile devices have helped in revolutionizing the process and improving the user experience. Tablets running on kiosk mode enable customers to control their room amenities remotely such as lights, temperature, music and of course, for ordering food. During waiting time in restaurants, kiosks can help keep patrons engaged by providing latest news, music, and games. Kiosk mode on devices also helps restaurants in taking customer feedback during waiting time or at the completion of service.

Retail: Kiosks are being extensively adopted by the retail sector, helping in enhancing revenue, improving customer satisfaction and promoting brand loyalty. By converting mobile devices into self-service kiosks, companies are able to provide important information to customers at the point of purchase, saving time and improving customer buying experience. Putting kiosks in strategic locations allow easy access to products which can help increase customer database and create brand awareness. Interactive kiosks enable customers to accomplish multiple tasks with minimum effort, giving greater shopping satisfaction. Most importantly, these kiosks help in reducing labor costs of sales professionals, as all the interactions were earlier done by professionals only.

Transportation & Logistics: Interactive kiosks are widely used by transportation, logistic and airline industries to provide real-time information to customers about schedules, check seat availability, book tickets, conduct check-in as well as performs another day to day activities. In the transportation industry, workers constantly move and require flexibility to use mobile devices in their vehicles. However, this flexibility might be a distraction from the work and can cause misuse of devices such as playing games, downloading videos, watching movies, accessing social networking sites etc. Kiosk mode ensures use of mobile devices for productive purposes only by locking down the devices/browsers/apps.

Technology always comes with drawbacks. With growing popularity of mobile devices, tablets and iPads in professional workspaces, there is an increase in related security concerns. Kiosk mode can help in keeping enterprises data/devices secure and enable them to work more efficiently. Most importantly, several kiosk mode features require a level of proficiency for implementation and new users may find it quite difficult to implement the complex settings. 42Gears has made this feature very simple to implement by offering products like SureLock, SureFox, and SureVideo that can help industries/individuals make the best use of the kiosk or single application mode provided on different platforms like Android, IOS, and Windows.

 

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