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Ultimate Guide to Mounting Rugged Tablets: Mount Selection


For tablet mounting I focus on three key aspects: the type of tablet, the type of mount, and the power requirements. Once I have all the details needed to recommend the best tablet (check out my blog on tablet selection for more on that) we can move on to the second aspect – mounting the tablet. 

First, however, I want to touch on our Snap Mount System, included on nearly all MobileDemand xTablets and xCases. The quick-release feature, made up of a Snap Plate and Snap Rail, enables a tablet to be easily inserted and removed from the mount for quick transitions from mounted to mobile. Our patented system pairs with RAM® Mounts' solutions for tablet mounting nearly anywhere. 

Now, each type (forklift, fixed and vehicle) has its own unique needs from an equipment standpoint so it’s important to have clear details of the area a tablet mount will be added. 

Forklift Mounting 

For forklift mounts, the recommended option depends on the ownership of the forklift itself. In many cases, those who are leasing their forklifts are not able to drill into the machine. On the other hand, having full ownership and the ability to drill into the equipment gives additional options. Another important aspect is determining where on the forklift you want the tablet. Does it need to be out of the operator’s line of sight? Or within reach for easy data access and entry? Do workers need the ability to move the tablet to different heights? 

Upright Post Clamp 

Let’s say your workers need immediate access to the device while they are operating the forklift, but you lease the machines. This is where our Upright Post Clamp mount thrives. Another no-drill option, the adjustable clamp allows you to move the mounted tablet up and down the post. This is especially important for worker ergonomics. For example, a worker can move the mounted tablet up to their eyeline when standing to view the WMS (warehouse management software). Once the item is found and the worker is back in the forklift, they can lower the mount out of their line of sight and continue onto the next item on their list. This mount has powered and non-powered versions. 

Overhead Roll Cage 

Now, if you can’t drill into the machine and plan to use the tablet as a fixed monitor, I recommend our Overhead Roll Cage mount. Two metal plates sandwich a post on the overhead cage for a secure hold without drilling into the forklift. A double-socket arm and D-ball then attaches the mount to a powered dock, which can be articulated to position the tablet at various angles. I put the D-ball size on almost all forklift mounts because it provides more surface and more stability. 

Fixed Forklift Mount 

If you own your forklifts and are okay with drilling into them and you have a specific mount location in mind, our Fixed Mount will work just about anywhere you want it to. The Snap Rail can be added directly to the dash or posts, or an arm and ball can be added for tablet articulation. 

Fixed Mounting 

A fixed mount can really be placed anywhere you want, just drill the RAM ball into place and you’re good to go. Putting together all the pieces needed for mounting a tablet is almost like building a Lego® set. You have the Snap Mount Rail, RAM ball, double socket arm (which needs to match the ball size), another ball screwed into the stand, wall, cart – wherever. There are a lot of use cases for our fixed mount. Picture a maintenance crew with a big toolbox they wheel around with a tablet securely mounted to the cart. Or a tablet with an integrated NFC module mounted on a beam, to track employee attendance. The list goes on and on. 

A no-drill option is also available with our Magnetic Mount. This mount also uses the Snap Mount System but lets you mount to anything magnetic, like sides of machinery, beams or cabinets. 

Vehicle Mounting 

Vehicle mounting is popular among field service technicians, public safety officers and delivery drivers to name a few. Similar to our forklift mount options, we have both drill and no-drill kits available depending on whether you can alter the vehicle. 

No-Drill Vehicle Mount 

If you’re unable to drill into the vehicle, we offer a Pole Mount which attaches to the passenger seat floor bolt. As with the other mounting kits, the arm and ball allow the viewing angle to be altered, and the Snap Rail allows for quick and easy removal. We offer different pole options depending on how high up you want the tablet to be. 

Dashboard Mount 

Another option is to use our Fixed Mount solution and drill into the dashboard of the vehicle. This places the tablet in a more direct view of the driver, which may be beneficial for GPS and maps. Again, this all depends on if you can drill into the vehicle. 

Keyboard Mounting 

One final thing we need to determine when building out your mounting solution is access to a keyboard. We can attach USB or Bluetooth connected keyboards to the bottom of our Powered Forklift and Vehicle mounts with a Keyboard Mount. 

For vehicles using the Pole Mount, I would really only recommend using a keyboard with a Surface device as it’s lightweight and less likely to become detached. A keyboard can easily be added to a Dashboard Mount option for those using other xTablets and xCases.

What’s Next? 

Whew, that was a lot. With all the options and variations, it can be an extremely overwhelming process, but that’s why I’m here, to ensure you have a successful tablet mounting experience! In the next blog we will tackle powering your tablet once it has been mounted. 

About the author: Amy Garman is currently the Northeast Enterprise Regional Sales Manager as well as head of International Sales for MobileDemand. With nearly 10 years at MobileDemand under her belt, she is the company’s mounting expert with a strong focus on forklift mounting. 

Connect with Amy on LinkedIn.