Tips for Selecting Data Collection Hardware.
Data collection is a part of everyday living which means you should be careful about how you approach it unless you are willing to use paper and pen for backup. Electronic data collection is much faster and easier to store than using print media. Nevertheless, you should take the necessary precautions if you do not want to be disappointed in the end. It is okay to use tablets, smartphones and even netbook computers. One of the things you should keep in mind when doing that is the screen size. The wide the screen the more the questions will be on display which means convenience. When the answers are being fed on the device, its memory will be used up gradually. It might reach a point where you cannot feed more information on the device when the memory is full. When going for the interviews and data collection, always carry with you extra storage space.
Prepare for special features you may require on the device. If you will be taking photos, ensure you have a good camera on the device you are using. If there is recording to be done, you need a great microphone. It is good for you to take GPS measurements into consideration if this is needed. Electronic device function on batteries and they have to be recharged from time to time. You need one with a long battery life if the field you will be working at has no electricity. You should go to the field harmed with power banks and they are some for laptops.
You should confirm that the device supports the language and font you ought to conduct the survey. Even for same models, variations do exist. Before you go charging to the field, it is good to have the devices tested on an actual survey and a similar or closely related environment so that there are no surprises when the final day comes. Even if the hardware is an important part of the process, the software is just as important. There is particular software for every hardware. Therefore, the software you will be using in the data collection process should be supported by the hardware you will be using. Think about the money you have for the process too because there is no use buying expensive devices when it is clear you cannot afford them.