A seat at the main table

27/01/2004 - 21:00

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THE early adoption of hand-held technology in the hospitality sector has been good news for Wangara-based developer and manufacturer PalmTEQ, which has undergone steady growth in recent years.

The company, which develops a range of products used in hospitality, barcoding and auditing, began operations in 1987 under the name of Kingdom Assets Pty Ltd.

Targeting the hospitality industry, the company’s initial focus was selling point-of-sale systems and specialised bar-coding solutions.

Under the name PalmTEQ, the company began to develop further hand-held solutions, among them WaiterPad and AuditPad, which are now sold across Australia and internationally.

Benefits of the system include more accurate billing, functionality that prompts the wait staff to up-sell, and increased ‘table turnover’ though speedier service – all of which means dollars for business, according to PalmTEQ managing director Keith Caiacob.

“It is estimated that two to 3 per cent of items in restaurants never get to the bill,” Mr Caiacob told WA Business News.

He said PalmTEQ’s point of difference was that it was both a software and hardware developer, and that its wireless products used radio frequency technology rather than a wireless local area network.

 “We are one of the only companies in Australia that manufacture RF [radio frequency] products and devices,” Mr Caiacob said.

And there were benefits in radio frequency technology over WLANs in the hospitality industry, he said. One of these, Mr Caiacob said, was that microwave ovens emit a similar frequency to WLANs, which can cause problems.

And the battery life of PalmTEQ’s product were between 14 and 22 hours, whereas devices run using a WLAN had a battery life of around four hours, he said.

Further, wireless LAN doesn’t penetrate through brick or glass.

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