The U.S. Postal Service has awarded Honeywell’s Scanning and Mobility unit a contract to supply up to 225,000 Mobile Delivery Devices to letter carriers, next-generation handhelds that will provide up-to-the-minute digital tracking of deliveries.
The MDDs, as they are commonly called, will be equipped to use multiple wireless networks for real-time tracking. They will also be able to access local wired and wireless communications, consolidate transactional data, and transmit collected data to applications requiring such information.
The MDD was introduced by Postmaster General Patrick Donohoe last week as part of his National Postal Forum keynote theme, “Stronger Together,” an initiative to ramp up the technology behind the mail in order to help marketers integrate it better with their digital efforts.
“We’re hesitant to call this a scanner, because it’s going to be so much more,” said Postal Service CIO Jim Cochrane in a press briefing at NPF. “Letter carriers sign into the device and can enter information such as address changes and deliveries made. Our plan is to, by the end of the year, have technology in every Post Office with letter carriers.”
Honeywell has been charged with delivering 75,000 of the scanners to letter carriers between August and December of this year. The MDD will replace paired devices—the aging Intelligent Mail Device and a clamshell cell phone—currently in use on the streets.
The contract is worth a potential $250 million to Honeywell.