Without giving too much about this communication devices computer examples article, but I thought it exciting and appropriate to what I’m now doing.
Users can receive a variety of audio messages. For example, if they report to work midday, a condensed, recorded version of the team's early-morning “huddle,” or status meeting, is sent to their “earbox” audio inbox, and they can listen as they prepare for work. Or they may get an audio alert when the Theatro wearable's battery is low.
The Theatro wearable uses Wi-Fi triangulation to locate users in range of the network. One staffer could ask the device, “Where is Al?” and the system would find that user and respond, “Al is in kitchen.”
The gadgets are shared; they're not exclusive to individuals. Right now, there's no security or authentication measures, either. “We don't think there's a loss prevention issue at this point, because you're not able to do anything else with the system with that information,” Thrailkill says.
Those ancient walkie-talkies may not be pretty, but they work. So why is The Container Store embracing the Theatro Wearable Computer?
Thrailkill says the wearable does everything a Walkie Talkie can and more. It also makes communication between staffers much more efficient and reduces unnecessary noise and distractions.
The Container Store worked with Theatro to measure walkie-talkie use in the Austin store and compare it to how staffers used the wearable. They found that the total number of messages each wearable user hears in a given day is about 60 percent less than before launching the Theatro system. But the overall number of messages going across the store network is about 30 percent higher, according to Thrailkill.
“We see more communication, but less of it going to everybody,” Thrailkill says. “This means less fatigue, less taking the ear piece out because it's bothering you while talking to a customer.”
The wearable devices are also much smaller and less obtrusive than two-way radios. Plus, they're voice controlled, so they require less physical interaction. (Voice commands are also customizable. Theatro programs custom commands today, but in the future users may be able to create and change their own commands.)
Another feature that sets the Theatro wearable apart from walkie-talkies is the ability to create customizable groups and communicate only with specific people. For example, Thrailkill says, on a given day you can create a group of register salespeople and subscribe people to that group instantly. “While that group is active, we can send messages just to that group.”
The Container Store also envisions a time when they will be able to create company-wide groups of subject matter experts.