Sorry, you need to enable JavaScript to visit this website.
Hand with TOUGHBOOK handheld in front of armored vehicles

Detroit-Based Cash in Transit Company Equips Mobile Workforce with TOUGHBOOK Handheld Devices

Total Armored Car Service, Inc. is Michigan’s only independently owned and operated armored car “Cash In Transit” company. With 60 trucks, four terminals and millions in cash being physically scanned and transported between vaults and trucks each day, Total Armored Car needed a reliable, rugged and highly optimized mobile solution to support the workforce’s unique needs.


Total Armored Car Service, Inc. is Michigan’s only independently owned and operated armored car “Cash In Transit” company. With 60 trucks, four terminals and millions in cash being scanned and transported each day, Total Armored Car’s success and accuracy relies on a technology solution able to meet their need for faster connectivity speeds that comply with industry regulations. And, of course it must be tough enough for an armored vehicle courier.


Total Armored Car worked hand-in-hand with Rugged Depot* – a valued Panasonic partner – to find a customized solution that would best fit its needs. After pre-deployment testing, Total Armored Car found that the Panasonic TOUGHBOOK® N1 was outfitted with the must-haves for streamlined and simplified deployment. Its standout features and functionality, including barcode scanner, 4G connectivity, long battery life and GPS technology, made TOUGHBOOK the go-to solution for their mobile workforce.


By outfitting its couriers with a purpose-built solution, Total Armored Car has achieved higher productivity and more efficient data entry that helps set each delivery up for success. Reliable connectivity gives Total Armored Car access to real-time information and GPS on the go, and the specific design of the TOUGHBOOK N1 ensures regulations are met with every pickup and delivery.

Previously, Total Armored Car used a consumer-grade device with a Windows® Mobile operating system. When Windows Mobile was discontinued, Total Armored Car knew the transition to Android™ was imminent. This, coupled with major cellular carriers discontinuing their 3G networks and migrating customers to 4G, accelerated the search for a solution that could keep operations running without requiring couriers to manually track the bags.

Man uses Panasonic handheld to scan barcode on bags of cash

With couriers having to scan over 1,000 bags every day, each bag containing an average of $25,000, the company needed devices that had easy-to-push and see buttons to avoid mistakes in entry without the use of a stylus. The devices also needed to meet federal guidelines and support its proprietary Track & Trace routing program. This program is a key component of operations as it provides accountability and protection for each bag of cash. Its successful implementation into the new devices was a must.

In collaboration with Total Armored Car and the company’s custom software developer, Panasonic supported a two week pre-deployment testing phase with the TOUGHBOOK N1. When compared to other devices on the market, the TOUGHBOOK N1 proved to be the best choice for Total Armored Car. It allowed the company to run more efficient, more accurate and more cost-effective operations to meet the demands, obligations and special needs of handling a customer’s cash. The 4G capabilities offered real-time location data on bags via its GPS technology to ensure each bag was accounted for at the start and end of each delivery.

With our previous legacy devices, there were all kinds of issues – the screens would break and the barcode scanners would stop working. That’s why I wanted a TOUGHBOOK. I needed the hardware to not give me any issues.
Dallas Barr Vice President of Operations of Total Armored Car

TOUGHBOOK N1 was rolled out and integrated into the organization’s workflow, starting with couriers on the road. With TOUGHBOOK N1, couriers were scanning bags, completing routes and balancing account locations faster than ever before. Crews valued the device’s long battery life, durability and easy to push buttons. Crews were also impressed with the device’s responsive and angled barcode scanner as it ultimately got the job done faster. In fact, crews on the road loved the TOUGHBOOK N1 so much that the workers within the vaults requested them too. Once introduced in the vaults, crews were finishing their day 20-30 minutes earlier than scheduled.

“We use our TOUGHBOOKs every day, and they still look brand new. There are no issues and the crew loves them,” said Barr. “I’m getting high-fives for making the decision.”

Total Armored Car’s partnership with Panasonic not only helps support the workforce’s unique needs, but it gives peace of mind to the clients it serves by setting the company up for accurate deliveries and continued success.

*Case study produced in conjunction with our valued partner, Rugged Depot