Zebra’s ZQ630 Plus Mobile Printers Set New Standards with Wi-Fi 6

0
759
A big plus

Zebra’s ZQ630 Plus range of mobile printers with Wi-Fi 6 connectivity aims to enhance workflows for businesses in a range of sectors while maintaining security – something that is increasingly important for connected businesses.

Businesses across a range of sectors from warehousing to hospitality are looking for improved mobile printing solutions to enhance the productivity of employees and give a better experience to customers.

One of the popular choices on the market is Zebra’s ZQ630 Plus and ZQ630 Plus RFID, which comes with Wi-Fi 6 connectivity, along with 802.11r fast roaming, instant wake-up over Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and seamless integration with device management systems and other features as part of Zebra’s Print DNA software suite. 

These models are part of the wider ZQ600 range, which comprises 12 models in all. The ZQ630 Plus and ZQ630 Plus RFID are relatively new models in the range, although the ZQ600 range has been a bestseller for many years now and is trusted by businesses in a range of organisations.

Zebra is including the latest connectivity tools in its mobile device and printer portfolio – including Wi-Fi 6 connectivity – to meet the needs of forward-thinking businesses. 

As Zebra acknowledge, the era of siloed data and workflows is over, and that is also true of the devices frontline workers rely on every day to get the job done. The idea of a ‘standalone’ printer or handheld device isn’t useful in today’s working world, where tools need to be easier to use as well as accessible, mobile, secure, and offer a range of useful functionalities.  

Upgrading devices and printers simply because new technology is available isn’t the way forward; there’s a reason quality hardware lasts for years. However, there is going to be something that pushes businesses to make a change from Wi-Fi 5 to 6, and it’s most likely going to be an outside force like a cybersecurity breach or a radio frequency identification (RFID) tagging requirement. 

Multi-connectivity 

Businesses will need to upgrade to printers and mobile devices with 5G and Wi-Fi 6 connectivity in the coming years if they want to remain competitive. It may be that a more secure workflow is needed, and a Wi-Fi 6 device connected to a Wi-Fi 6 network offers the strongest defence for data. Or it could be that a mobile printer capable of producing RFID labels on the go is needed and it makes the most business sense to also ensure the printer is compatible with Wi-Fi 6 networks for performance and security purposes. 

A modern device or printer needs the latest and best tools for frontline workers. This includes devices with 5G and Wi-Fi 6 connectivity, near field communication, Bluetooth, and those that can carry out high quality RFID reading via a sled. For mobile printers, that should look like the capability to print 1D and 2D barcode labels alongside RFID tags, optimal security, and even Wi-Fi 6. 

Allaying cybersecurity concerns 

Wi-Fi 5 devices can be used on a Wi-Fi 6 network – and vice versa – but businesses will not get the full benefit of a Wi-Fi 6 network without Wi-Fi 6 devices. This includes cybersecurity, which is an increasing priority for businesses as the number of malicious attacks continues to rise in 2024.

“A European business recently moved to Wi-Fi 6 quite quickly after experiencing a devastating cybersecurity incident on an older network,” said Richard Barfield, printing specialist, EMEA, Zebra Technologies. 

“After speaking with several experts, the business leaders realised without Wi-Fi 6 devices connected to their new Wi-Fi 6 network, there were more vulnerabilities than they could tolerate in their upgraded wireless environment. The leaders called Zebra to see if they could get Wi-Fi 6 mobile printers that offered WPA3 security protection. Fortunately, Zebra could, and they’re using them today.” 

Security isn’t the only reason for businesses to have appropriate printers connected to their wireless network, but it’s one of the most important, given the escalating data security threat. Organisations need to see security as an ecosystem where all devices, including printers, are a priority. 

The total number of devices that must connect to a workplace network is growing, coupled with the need to maintain mobility with coverage wherever workers are – kerbside, warehouse, or front of store. That requires sufficient access points. If a business has a high density of connected devices (not just printers) relying on the same access point but uses older technology from either a network or device perspective, that business could face performance issues. In these scenarios, Wi-Fi 6 devices connected to Wi-Fi 6 is better than using Wi-Fi 5 devices and networks. 

This is where mobile printers such as the ZQ630 Plus come into their own and can provide businesses with effective printing solutions for years to come.

At-a-glance 

Zebra ZQ630 Plus features:

• Centre-loading media locking for variable roll widths and Clamshell design

• Large, easy-to-read colour  288 x 240 pixel display

• 5-way navigation buttons, two software defined keys

• Link-OS operating system

• IP54 dust and water resistant

• Removable, rechargeable PowerPrecision+ 6800 mAh Li-Ion battery

• Built-in battery charger

• Easy-to-use peel and present mode

• Label present sensor for issuing labels one at a time

• Power-saving Sleep Mode with Instant Wake

• Bluetooth, Bluetooth Low Energy, and WLAN options

• 512MB Flash memory (128MB user storage)

• 400 MHz 32-bit ARM processor

• Zebra Print Touch technology

• Label odometer

• Print DNA software

• NFC Print Touch Support

What’s in the box?

• Printer

• Battery (Li-Ion 3250 mAh)

• Belt clip

• USB cable  (Type C to Type A)

• Quick start guide

• Registration card

• Safety guide

• Regulatory guide.

What is Wi-Fi 6?

Wi-Fi 6 is the next generation of Wi-Fi and delivers faster internet speeds to users and less bandwidth congestion. It is faster than the previous generation, Wi-Fi 5.

Many businesses are starting to upgrade their networks to Wi-Fi 6 as the prices have come down and, with the increasing use of devices and the cloud, the faster speeds and less congestion helps them to run more efficiently.

Editor’s View

With Wi-Fi 6 becoming increasingly important to businesses, Zebra’s ZQ630 Plus range are well placed provide solutions for a range of printing applications.

The ZQ630 Plus offers businesses the convenience of mobile printing, but with the speed afforded by Wi-Fi 6 that means employees can be as efficient as possible and aren’t held up by their technology. `

Security is crucial too – printers have been often exposed as a weak point in network security in recent years and this should give users peace of mind.

The unit is small, so ideal for on-the-go printing, and durable – it is built to withstand drops (within reason), water spillages and dust. It also has a long-life battery, which means it can run all shift long.

It can also be mounted to a forklift, which means it can be easily accessible while moving throughout a warehouse. 

The ZQ630 Plus and ZQ630 Plus RFID are ideal for applications in the warehousing, logistics, retail and manufacturing sectors – among others – where high volume mobile printing of labels and receipts is commonly required.