Dell Latitude Tablets Go On DEA Stakeouts - InformationWeek

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Dell Latitude Tablets Go On DEA Stakeouts
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Michael Endler
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Michael Endler,
User Rank: Author
6/18/2013 | 4:15:33 PM
re: Dell Latitude Tablets Go On DEA Stakeouts
That's all true-- it's the form factor, screen and peripherals that the DEA likes, not Windows 8. As the article says:

"Most agents work in Windows 7 via VDI, so the
merits of Windows 8, the Latitude's native OS, was not why the DEA
picked the tablet. Shafernich said mobile apps and touch are 'fun
outside of work' but that the Latitudes appeal because of their
pragmatic qualities, such as easy integration into the agency's existing
security and networking infrastructure."

It should probably be pointed out that some other tablet deployments (e.g. Seton Hall, Clear Creek Independent School District) have involved the appeal of not only the tablet form factor but also Windows 8. But in this case, the DEA is interested because Dell built a useful machine. That the Latitudes run Windows 8 was important only insofar as the devices use a Windows OS; Shafernich made clear that he prefers managing Windows to iOS. But that's not really about Win8 in particular.

Michael Endler, IW Associate Editor
EMM Guru
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EMM Guru,
User Rank: Apprentice
6/17/2013 | 8:25:22 PM
re: Dell Latitude Tablets Go On DEA Stakeouts
I am intimately familiar with this project and the "tablet" is just a dumb terminal for the DEA's virtual desktop environment. All the work they are doing is being done in the secure data center and the user's are just manipulating screen shots on the tablet. Honestly it could be any tablet and the only reason it was Windows 8 was because it supported more peripherals, including an integrated Smart Card reader for authentication to the VDI environment. This is more a testament to Dell building a product that makes sense for enterprise & government and then it is for Windows 8 tablets.
ChrisMurphy
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ChrisMurphy,
User Rank: Author
6/13/2013 | 11:08:15 PM
re: Dell Latitude Tablets Go On DEA Stakeouts
I don't know, a tablet sounds to me like a more practical device than a laptop for a mobile job like this. I think Michael's point of whether you'll still end up needing two devices is the big test.
Michael Endler
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Michael Endler,
User Rank: Author
6/13/2013 | 9:11:29 PM
re: Dell Latitude Tablets Go On DEA Stakeouts
If it makes you feel any better, when the DEA showed up in Oakland a while back to shut down a bunch of dispensaries, the locals did their best to chase the agents out of town. It wasn't just the protestors you'd expect, either-- seemed clear a lot of East Bay residents would rather have law enforcement dedicating resources elsewhere.

But that point aside, I'm pretty sure the long-term impacts of managing fewer devices (and that the devices are cheaper than the ones they replace) has been factored into their cost projections. Tablets get refreshed more often than laptops traditionally have been, and companies and institutions are generally mindful of this. I'm more curious whether the tablets are useful enough to boost productivity, especially if they're replacing desktops in some cases, or if the agency ends up needing two devices for many employees.
ChasH789
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ChasH789,
User Rank: Apprentice
6/13/2013 | 6:20:30 PM
re: Dell Latitude Tablets Go On DEA Stakeouts
""We don't have the money to do anything right now, with sequestration, but we're doing this," Shafernich said. "

Says it all doesn't it? We don't have money to fight crime, so we are going to spend less fighting crime, and get the boys 6,000 slick new laptops that will be outdated and obsolete in 2 years. Ya, sounds like a real good idea. Maybe they can roll over a few more state legal medical marijuana dispensaries to help they pay for it..


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