Tablets are one of the hottest tech gadgets on the market and for good reason. They are lightweight, easy to use, fast and have multiple ways to connect to the Internet. In 2013 tablet shipments were up 52%, and tablets account for 25% of the total web usage, according to ‘Internet Trends 2014 report’ by Mary Meeker of KPCB. Mobile data traffic as a whole rose 81% year over year, according to the same report.
Pumpers armed with tablets can remotely monitor individual wells or whole fields. Other production team members can have that same access to real-time information.
Here are some advantages to using tablets for remote monitoring:
- Portability. While laptops have been around for many years, tablets are much more convenient to carry around from the office to the field, from well to well. Tablets are many pounds lighter and can easily be held while in use. Tablets are made to use on the go, with components that can withstand mobility and abrupt starts and stops.
- Connectivity. Tablets are designed to connect to both Wi-Fi and cellular networks. This provides a greater guarantee of connection regardless of location. When Wi-Fi is available, pumpers can use that capability to save data costs. When it is not, the pumper can usually still find a cellular connection.
- Hot Spot Compatibility. Many smartphones can now be sued as Wi-Fi hot spots. Similarly, the modems in pump drives and remote terminal units on site can sometimes support hot spot connection. Tablets can thus connect ad hoc via Wi-Fi on site. This again saves the cost of data plans for the tablet itself.
- Convenience. Tablets can be used on site, in a truck, at a café, at home or wherever a production team member needs it. When it is nasty cold and sweltering hot, pumpers can avoid the weather by checking the field virtually. While pumpers still need to make their rounds, using remote access limits their exposure.
- Simplicity. Tablets are incredibly easy to use. Switch them on and they are ready for use in seconds. Use your fingers or a stylus to move around, zoom and enter data. Push a button to turn it off. Pumpers spend a lot of time moving from place to place. Having a tool with them that can be turned on and off and used on demand is simple and practical.
Access to oilfield data is as easy as 1-2-3 from a tablet:
- Turn on the tablet
- Go to the Well Optix web site
Once logged in production team members can view pump data and associated well data as available. Historical data is available for trend analysis and data can be compared across wells. With the right privileges, pumpers can even use the tablet to make adjustments remotely.