Helpful Considerations for Remotely Updating an Embedded System

As complexity and functionality of embedded devices increases, the need for firmware updates has risen, whether to fix bugs, close security holes, add capability, or update the look and feel of a GUI. Increasingly these embedded devices are connected to networks, which enables remote embedded system updates from a central location as needed. To accomplish these remote updates reliably, while accounting for security and preventing problems from disabling these remote systems, certain considerations are important, including feature and security updates. Important Considerations It is important to account for the following when designing a mechanism for remote embedded system updates: Firmware...

Read More

Embedded Product Development: Follow These Three Steps

There are three important steps associated with embedded product development: choosing the hardware platform, selecting the operating system, and creating the application software. These steps have a major impact on costs, performance, product quality, product longevity, and time to market. Choosing the Right Hardware Platform Key to successful embedded product development is choosing the right hardware platform, starting with the processor and extending to peripheral components. These decisions can have a profound effect on costs, both engineering and recurring. To make the right selection, you need to consider several key factors. Hardware availability: Will the hardware you choose be available...

Read More

Two of the Top Embedded Circuit Boards for Industrial, Military, and Medical Use

Although there are many excellent embedded circuit boards on the market today, two, in particular, stand out for being among the most flexible and best fit for industrial, military, and medical purposes. InHand Fury-M6 Due to the compact size of this single board computer, it is an excellent choice for both industrial and military use. In a small 2” x 2.75” footprint, the Fury M-6 boasts a touchscreen interface, onboard LCD interface, eMMC flash memory, Wi-Fi, sensor connections, Bluetooth BLE, and battery management. In addition, stacking connectors bring out other interfaces and peripherals that can be accessed with a custom...

Read More

How to Customize a Tablet for Better Security

Android tablets are built on an open platform, unlike the iPad with its proprietary iOS, providing the opportunity for customization. One way that customization is possible is by enhancing security and reliability features. In fact, the security on an Android tablet can surpass the security on an iPad and other similar devices. For semi-custom and custom equipment, the Android tablet has become increasingly popular. It is commonly used for business, industrial, military, and medical applications. Examples of Customizable Security Features InHand Electronics can customize a tablet’s security and reliability features to meet difficult requirements, such as: HIPPA regulations for use...

Read More

A Commercial Tablet Just Won’t Cut It for Your Medical Application

It is tempting to want to purchase inexpensive, commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) tablets for use in medical facilities or to interface with medical equipment. Unfortunately, there are several technical, regulatory and security issues that could prevent you from doing that.  Technical issues, FDA, and HIPAA security rules are just three potential pot holes for COTS tablets. Custom Android tablets for medical applications can be the answer and Modified-COTS custom tablets can get you to market quickly and with lower costs. Medical Grade Tablet – Technical Issue There are many unique devices in hospitals and doctor’s offices that a tablet could communicate...

Read More

Custom Android Tablets

Over the past several years, the use of tablet technology has proliferated not only for personal use, but also across industry and government. These portable platforms, with easily written custom application software, are suitable for many applications. However, iOS and most Android tablets often fall short in industrial, military, and medical use for a variety of reasons. Custom Android tablets overcome these shortcomings. Why consumer-grade tablets fail in industrial, medical, and military use Consumer-grade tablets fail in the field for many reasons, including the following: Insufficient ruggedness: consumer-grade tablets are often repackaged, placed within more rugged outer enclosures. While this...

Read More

Custom Design of Human-Machine Interface Electronic Devices

Interactive electronic devices require a human-machine interface (HMI) that enables communication of a user with the underlying electronic device. Many industrial, medical, and military applications include underlying electronics specialized to the application. The HMI aspect can be satisfied using an HMI front end – an embedded computer with touchscreen/display attached to a larger device that enables user interaction. This article describes how such an HMI front end can be implemented. Components of a Human-Machine Interface In today’s embedded devices, the HMI fundamentally consists of four items: the display, touchscreen, processor, and operating system. Display: The display provides visual communication of...

Read More

Proving Our ’Nearly Indestructible’ Rugged Tablet, Episode 5: Dishwasher

Our latest Hydra-F6 durability test takes us to InHand's kitchen, where the tablet gets a wash. As Rodney states in the video, the average dishwasher gets up to 70 degrees Celsius and the tablet is able to withstand temperatures up to 75 degrees Celsius; this is a good test. And as I decide to have fun with some chocolate syrup, this also proves to be a good example for tablet use cases, as the rugged tablet is ideal for military, medical, industrial and infotainment industries, such as restaurants. Hope you enjoy! If you have durability test idea for us, tweet...

Read More

MTBF: Breaking Down the Tedious Task of Reliability Analysis

In the simplest sense, a reliability analysis is a means for calculating the failure rate of an electronic device based on the type and quality of the components included in the design.  It can be considered an important indication of the overall quality of a product.  More specifically, it can be used to indicate the theoretical period of time one can expect a particular device to operate before it experiences a failure of some kind.  As such, reliability is commonly quantified in terms of “Mean Time Between Failure” (MTBF).  MTBF can be defined using any unit of measure of time. ...

Read More

How to Accelerate Time to Market for Electronic Products

For companies designing next generation electronic devices for the medical, industrial, or military industries, there are several modern development processes that can accelerate time to market. The first process involves using a commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) single board computer (SBC) as the main processor board for the new product design. Instead of starting from scratch designing all the circuitry, building prototypes, software driver development, board bring-up, and designing a processor board in-house, the product team simply utilizes an existing COTS single board computer. This allows the design team to accelerate the development process and leverage existing production-ready hardware and a validated and...

Read More