An important aspect to consider when assessing a mail and package tracking system is the platform’s ability to scale as business demands increase. Not only must the core system components (web services, wireless capabilities and the database) scale, but also the ease and speed with which additional devices such as wireless handhelds can be introduced. The above considerations together with the ability to scale with minimum technology investment must not be overlooked.
Typically, systems scale either vertically or horizontally from an infrastructure hardware perspective. If the package tracking system only scales vertically, this will likely require upgrading the current infrastructure technology by adding more memory, processing capability or a combination of both. In extreme cases the entire technology platform must be replaced resulting in potential service disruption during the upgrade process.
If the system scales horizontally, the upgrade process to support new business demand is less complicated and the risk to business disruption is greatly reduced. In this cost-efficient model, rather than replacing the existing infrastructure technology, additional devices (web, application or database servers) are introduced and the application processing is shared or distributed across the multiple devices.
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