• Project Title:
  • Mobile Delivery Device Program
  • Start Date:
  • Monday, August 29, 2016
  • Estimated Report Release Date:
  • February 2017

The Mobile Delivery Device (MDD) is the latest handheld device to be used by Postal Service carriers to track package activities in real time. The MDDs access a wireless network for real-time tracking, thereby creating package visibility that is essential for the Postal Service to maintain and grow its package business. 

We are conducting an audit to determine whether the MDD program is meeting the intended return on investment as indicated by its Decision Analysis Report criteria.

  • Have you noticed any improvement in the package scanning activities involving MDDs after December 2014? Please explain.
  • Are there enough MDDs for carriers to perform their tasks?
  • Do you think the Postal Service provides real-time tracking of your package? Also, how does USPS scanning accuracy compare to other service providers?
  • Are there any overarching or general concerns related to the timing/accuracy of scanning notifications? Has this impacted your business? How so?

Comments (78)

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  • anon

    One improvement in the mobile delivery device would be to have a flashlight that actually stays on longer. I am able to access the flashlight at times I am making a delivery in the dark. It is unsafe to approach a residents' porch in the dark. Using the flashlight is helpful but it should stay on longer in order to ensure safety of the carrier.

    Jan 05, 2017
  • anon

    The MDD battery doesn't last more than 6-7 hours in 40 degree temps. The screen stays lit for 60 seconds following completion of a scan. This is not necessary and wastes needed battery life. I've been told that there is a high capacity batter for the MDD. If so, it should be deployed immediately. Carriers are scanning multiple packages when it looks like their scanner is about to die. This denies the cutomer of accurate scanning information. And they are using their cell phone camera to record bar codes when their scanner dies.

    Jan 05, 2017
  • anon

    My supervisor keeps saying I'm not scanning priority packages almost every other day. I am 100% sure I am scanning every package I deliver and makes sure it says that the information was recovered successfully. Still it is saying I am not scanning packages

    Dec 29, 2016
  • anon

    While in the field a few conversations were made. They seem to be rugged but in my humble opinion it was an over priced contract from Honeywell. It seems that a Honeywell warranty needs to take place for a guaranteed battery life for the entire carrier shift. The MDD is an important component in the USPS digital transition (ie. Informed Delivery, Surface Visibility and Informed Visibility. Thank you, www.PostalNotice.com

    Dec 18, 2016
  • anon

    Battery goes dead before I can finish my route

    Dec 16, 2016
  • anon

    Why isnt my pacmage here? It was "attempted" 5dec2016 at 1250 PM and i never heard the doorbell nor any knock on my door, which i was less than 5 feet away from all day long in my living room. Hmmmmm.... "Well heck, stuff happens i will just schedule redelivery." Did that and 2 days later still no package, once again i was home all day and nothing. This is getting rediculous. If it were UPS I would already have my package.

    Dec 07, 2016
  • anon

    I am a 30 year employee in Nashua NH, my comment is if the scanner asks for a sample request, the vibrator that is activated is a HUGE power draw on the battery. this results in premature battery discharge. which results in many packages, and msp"s left unable to scan. All that has to be done is disable the vibrator function, or discontinue doing these useless sample requests. Thank you, nick soukaras

    Nov 17, 2016
  • anon

    why pay for tracking when the packages are not always scanned at the time of pick up or drop off?. I was told by local post office that if the carrier has more than 5 tracking packages to pick up that they did not have to scan them. and at the window. I was told that many times they might not be scanned until they arrive at Jacksonville. are you serious!!!!!! what are we paying for tracking for????? I have 3 packages w/tracking that were never scanned when picked up by the carrier and never had a scan ever!...I had to refund the buyers money and then it was pass the time to request refund on the shipping I paid for!. claims were filed on all the missing packages only to receive the apology letter that they have been unable to locate it. I doubt they even tried to look for it!.....something HAS to be done to correct this issue with not scanning the packages at time of pick-up. thanks scott belcher

    Nov 10, 2016
  • anon

    The package lookahead feature is always messed up, somedays my parcels are in order and it works great but most days parcels from previous day are back on with just some of my parcels for the current day. Then when i scan one delivered it turns it yellow on other days when it is working properly it turns them yellow when a scan is missing. Wish this would get fixed before christmas I love this feature when working properly.

    Nov 04, 2016
  • anon

    I am a rural carrier and i love the new package lookahead feature, but some days the scanner has all the parcels on it from the day before plus just some of the parcels for the current day. It also highlights in yellow the ones that i scan not a missed scan, is their something we need to do to the scanner to reboot it daily. Can't seem to find anyone that knows these answers. Some days it works perfectly with all parcels in order and fall off list as I scan delivered.

    Nov 03, 2016
  • anon

    Is it possible to add the calendar date to the screen on the MDD scanner? Currently there are icons on the bottom left, then a large blank, then a couple more icons and finally the current time. It would be really helpful for carriers and easy to implement on your part to have the current date displayed in the blank space on the bottom center of the screen in the following format: MM/DD/YYYY This would be convenient for leaving notices while on the street and would avoid mis-dated notices.

    Nov 02, 2016
  • anon

    My package was scanned back at the local office after it was inexplicably not delivered yesterday. No scans after 24 hours later. Not exactly what I'd consider real time.

    Nov 01, 2016
  • anon

    Instead of more things in an employees' hand other than mail - why not just handle and deliver the mail? Instead of removing drop boxes in an expanding population, leave them and add more. The post office equates less work with lower operating costs... But has sacrificed the sanctity of mail delivery in doing so. Just get back to work! With PMG being who she is, LOL right?

    Oct 31, 2016
  • anon

    Had a package marked as delivered in the USPS tracking system today. It wasn't. Postal carrier has either delivered to the wrong address, lost, or stole my package.

    Oct 30, 2016
  • anon

    If my package was delivered to me? Why didnt i get to sign for it? Especially when it costs me $462.87 . i want my Security device.

    Oct 30, 2016
  • anon

    We've had them for a year and now the batteries do not last a full shift. They go dead before you hit the last scan point, they go dead before you can scan the last parcel and so you end up taking pics of the barcode with your cell phone then grabbing another scanner when you get back to the office and scanning the photo on your phone. Kind of defeats the purpose of having GPS tagging when it shows the package was scanned in the office. What happens if the package gets stolen off the porch? Does the carrier then get blamed for the faulty equipment you have provided us?

    Oct 27, 2016
  • anon

    International mail stopped tracking in Chicago. USPS online would not let me file an inquiry. I submitted the form for lost/missing mail. No help from the call center either. I requested a call-back but when they called back the system would not recognize me when I pressed "1". System kept calling me back and would never acknowledge me pressing the "1" on the phone. Went into my local office and they said calling in was the only thing to do and good luck if anybody will answer. I'd like my shipping and item paid for. LK196909645US

    Oct 27, 2016
  • anon

    Why would the device question if the scan is a duplicate scan? This happens very often and has been reported to management but no response as to why.

    Oct 21, 2016
  • anon

    Because you've scanned the same exact barcode twice. In some cases the mailer is stealing from the usps by re-printing a shipping label and using it on multiple packages. Check the labels when the scanner asks about duplicate scans.

    Dec 14, 2016
  • anon

    I think postal delivery workers are abusing the use of this device by scanning packages as delivered, and sometimes even as "handed directly to the customer" and nothing gets delivered or gets delivered days later. I am specifically referring to Redondo Beach, CA USPS that delivers to Hermosa Beach, CA. I am very, very unhappy with the service and will request my amazon.com purchases to be delivered by a different service. P.S. I get my neighbors' mail every other day, and I have 63 neighbors. I wonder how much of my private mail my neighbors are getting. My identity already has been stolen twice. Please, do something about it. I would really appreciate some kind of feedback. Thank you very much.

    Oct 18, 2016
  • anon

    The sampling requests are never accurate, especially in apartments and cluster boxes. Also, while the sign on screen option is fantastic compared to signing on a 3849, would be helpful if the orientation was horizontal instead of vertical allow more room to sign. For a short time there was "animal interference" as a non-delivered option, and then it was removed. When trying to text message the office, it doesn't let us use punctuation, and limits message length. Also, supervisors don't know how to use this and end up calling carriers personal cell phones.

    Oct 14, 2016
  • anon

    Scanner problems? Here's a couple....Let's say you can't get to a box because it's blocked or unsafe. You scan the parcel so indicating that the box is blocked and then it asks you to scan a peach slip to leave in the box. Well, if you could reach the box to put the slip into it then you could of left the package. We scan a blank slip to satisfy the scanner and bring back the package. This particular request to scan a slip should be voided. There's a similar problem with postage dues that have a bar code needing scanning - if there's no one home to pay the monies due and you hit "attempted" the scanner asks why, listing no secure location, box blocked, etc., but not listing that there was no one home to pay the money or they had no available cash. We have to hit something to satisfy the scanner so we falsify the data by clicking on no secure location. There should be an option for this instance, perhaps Postage Due Not Paid, so both the sender and receiver know the correct reason the package is being delayed if they track the package online. Another problem is the sound the scanner makes when scanning MSP labels. I was accused twice of not scanning a label when I knew I had done so. The next time I scanned the label and heard the acceptance beep I looked at the screen and found it saying bar coded not scanned or something similar. If a label on a parcel is not scanned correctly the scanner emits a loud bleep telling the carrier so. The same bleep sound should be emitted for misread MSP scans.

    Oct 14, 2016
  • anon

    It's only as good as the person using it. I frequently will get notification that a package has been delivered only to find an empty mailbox. 15-20 minutes later the carrier will show up with it or as an unfortunate recent experience found that it had been delivered to someone else, and it was never found.Scanning inside the local P.O. apparently is a challenge to its employees too. Twice in the last 5 months I got notified that my packages couldn't be delivered due to no secure place to leave it? So I had to reschedule delivery. Both times they were small padded mailing envelopes ,there was almost nothing in the mailbox, didn't have to be signed for ,and I was home all day. The claim from the local P.O. both times was it was a scanning/system error when they were processing the packages before dispatching them to the carrier.

    Oct 03, 2016
  • anon

    Thank you for making your comment on our blog. Are you in a rural area? How many times have you experienced this issue? Your information is valuable going forward.

    Oct 04, 2016
  • anon

    Hi, the MDD is good, but when customers call claiming NR the sups "always" look up the geo data to see where the MDD was when the item was scanned delivered and use the location as an "absolute" record of where the package is when speaking with carriers about non receipt claims. The carriers have been instructed to do all scans at the exact Point of delivery, but isn't there room for error due to weather or other interference? Also, when is it appropriate to tell the customer where their item shows it was scanned??? I have personally heard a sup tell the customer where the package is and to go there and ask for it. When bringing it up to another sup,they act like that is acceptable...... ABSOLUTELY NOT......that is a huge liability for the post office.. As well as pixx poor service. . There should be a telecon for that. Got common sense??

    Sep 28, 2016
  • anon

    Thank you for commenting on our page. Does management have any instructions they give you on informing the customer of where an item is scanned, and or for scanning at point of deliver? Have you raised your concerns with management, and if so did they provide you with any guidance? In your experience how many times does a customer call due to NR, and how many times is there error due to weather or other interference? Thank you again for any information you can provide us with, and as always please continue to interact, and engage with your audit ask page.

    Oct 03, 2016
  • anon

    First I want to say thank you for bringing us Mobile Delivery Device Program. I am working at the Rockville Main Post Office in Maryland. I tried to read all comments and I can say all comments are very helpful. I just want to add couple of sentences. Yes, battery life is the first issue on the MDDs. But most carrier doesn't know how they can resolve it. When you're ready to go on the street, take your MDD from charger. If you take your MDD earlier you can't use it 8 hours in work time. But still you can use it. Here is the solution: what I am doing is: I am taking my MDD from the charger when I am ready to go to the street around 10.00am. Battery is showing 4 bars and full charged. I am scanning almost 120 barcodes every day including 3 office scan point, 15 MSP, certified mails, express mails, some request on the street etc. There is a turn off button at the bottom-left on the scanner. I am always turning off the screen after each scan, so I am saving over one hour. After coming back to the station I have still two bars on my scanner. Even if you get bump you can still make it. You just need to know how to use your MDD. Another problem is when we are getting a request for mail scan on the street. The MDD vibrating all the time. This is one of the reasons which kills the battery. CEO should be working on it. Second problem is when we are getting request for mail scan, some times we can't scan more then 16 pieces of mail or flats. Some house is getting always over 35pcs mail every day. After 16th scan, MDD stopping by self. And please stop sending to us request on Monday. We're always getting a lot of mails on Mondays or after holidays. Some times we are getting information for the scanner update. This update is very important for carrier and postal service. If you don't have connections to the wireless you will get an error update problem. Make sure your MDD showing wireless full. Third problem is our Supervisor is sending sometimes message over scaner to us. But this message sometimes is not general. I mean it's interested only for one route. But they are sending to all carriers. Supervisor doesn't know how can send single text message to the single route scanner to the carrier. Every scanner has ID number and of course Supervisor can send text message to an other scanner. Why all mail carrier getting always private message on the scanner? May be this is our Station problem :) Last one is SEO should be put forward option on the menu. Sometimes we need to forward mail or package to the customer. But we can choose only undeliverable. This is not good too. I want to write here more things about the MDDs but I can't. Because my English is not so good and I am writing to very hard. It's taking to much time :)

    Sep 21, 2016
  • anon

    Thank you for your informative response. Your information will help support our team moving forward. Could you please tell us specifically if there is training on the MDDs given at your office? You mention turning off the screen. Is this method given to you by management in order to help preserve the battery? How many times if any has your battery become a problem for your delivery route? Again thank you so much for your information.

    Sep 21, 2016
  • anon

    Mobile delivery not actual outside America

    Sep 19, 2016
  • anon

    Our MDD's occasionally states something about a SIM card, we have been instructed to just press enter. Also when the MDD's ask do you want to UPDATE CONFIGURATION we were told to select NO UPDATE because its time to hit the street.

    Sep 18, 2016
  • anon

    Thank you for your feedback. Does the device ask you to update configuration every time you utilize it? Also have you asked management about the SIM card and if so what has been there guidance on what the SIM card function is used for? Are the scanners updated after your route or are you continually instructed to press no update?

    Sep 19, 2016
  • anon

    I was just thinking the same about how managers scan everything attempted when parcels are mis-sorted and returned. In our office they get around the GPS issue (so it doesnt show that the packages are scanned at the office) they use the OLD scanners without GPS and scan them all attempted. I see a lot of fraud with these devices in my office. Please have an option for "visible damage" followed by asking if package is delivered or attempted without me having to scan package again. Currently must scan package and select visible damage. Then scan package again to indicate whether or not it is delivered or not.

    Sep 15, 2016
  • anon

    When a parcel can't be delivered because lets say you came to the wrong carrier or when the new guys bring them back for redelivery because they're still learning the delivery process. Management will ask those carriers or management will do it themselves scan the parcels as attempted. And then the scanners will ask to scan one of the pink slips but in fact it was never tempted. It covers management and carrier mistakes but it puts a lot of strain and headaches to the customer. We are trying to remove the headaches that the customers are experiencing. By misinforming customers that your parcel was attempted they will wait till the next day the carrier comes back around sometimes it's a different carrier and I always get asked by customers that "I was home all day yesterday and you never delivered my package, I even went to the office and they couldn't find it" this again puts stress on the customers and time wasted for them traveling to the post office in hopes trying to find their package. Lets have the option to respond that your parcel will be attempted the next following day because of your f*** up. Instead management will just scan as attempted which in reality never was attempted

    Sep 15, 2016
  • anon

    It would help if the post office can order another set of batteries just for us to take on the street as a spare this can some what help as a temporary relief

    Sep 15, 2016
  • anon

    The option to scan parcels as dog loose or something in that nature

    Sep 15, 2016
  • anon

    Obviously the Contraband problem. If we find that a customer is acting suspicious or is following us to wait for a special package. And if the package already look suspicious. I don't want any of this activity in my neighborhood especially on my route. There should be an option to scan the parcel that the customer package needs to be picked up at the postal inspection office. This will A) give the reputation to not use the post office B) make it safer for employees C) help strengthen the post office with local city officials in their objectives.

    Sep 15, 2016
  • anon

    Please make it so the side buttons turn on the scanner. They work after the scanner is on. It is a major pain to have to use the main green scan button to turn it on. Also, please lower the volume or allow it to be lowered by the carrier. I had the volume lowered on my scanner, then an update made it very loud. It is extremely annoying when delivering into businesses, doctor's offices, nursing homes, etc. Otherwise, they seem to work pretty good. I'll agree that there needs to be more/better options for non deliverable items.

    Sep 14, 2016
  • anon

    Has management provided any training on the use of the buttons, and or on how to utilize turning the volume up or down? Or is the volume preset before you are given the device? How often does the device get updated? Thank you again for any feedback you can provide.

    Sep 19, 2016
  • anon

    The MDD's can be put to better use than what is currently used. With the real time information available to the customers, that same real time information can be related to the carriers on the street and decrease the amount of fraudulent tracking numbers, specifically those tracking codes that are xeroxed and are used again and again and impossible to catch on the street. Real time information can alert the carrier and prevent the revenue loss. Carriers also have been accused of fudging their scans, and management overuses the scanner capabilities for disciplinary purposes and that in itself is self defeating. Fraudulent scans also depreciate the value of the tool and lowers the public's trust. In order to placate the management, delivery scans or business closed scans are being made prior to real attempts. By utilizing the built in GPS function, real time location at the time of the scan can legitimize the actual scan and render trust of the postal service's deliveries to the public.

    Sep 14, 2016
  • anon

    When the carrier gets an alert for an SPMS scan to often it creates issues where the scanner must be re-booted. The gps fencing is not precise enough when the carriers get an SPMS alert. It will frequently ask to scan items when you are either on a different street or a house or two away. Battery life as stated by many. The tracking of packages and CPMS scans are excellent in my area (northeastern US). Not sure if areas with spotty gps service have issues.

    Sep 14, 2016
  • anon

    Like almost everyone is saying the scanners work great except for the battery life. Our office is told that when we have a package that has to be forwarded that we have to scan the package as underlived as addressed. There should be a place when a carrier scans a package that a function for being forward is on the list of scan options. When a customer is tracking their package and they see this they are calling in to find out why there package was undelivered as addressed and was there package returned to the sender. This function would allow the customer to see that the package was forward when the carrier received it and to look for it in a couple of days at their new address.

    Sep 14, 2016
  • anon

    We have noticed a lot of comments in relation to battery life. For those experiencing battery life issues are there any procedures in place that you are aware of and have you reported the concern to management? If so what procedures are you being instructed to follow by management? We are really interested in hearing your thoughts on the MDD’s.

    Sep 14, 2016
  • anon

    My management in the Mid-Carolinas district, suggested that battery life could be preserved by not removing the MDD's before we were ready to hit the street, which is a suggestion not followed by many carriers. They have also suggested when the MDD's were about to die or did black out, to remove the back cover for a short period of time and replace but to not remove the battery. In one of the stations in the city of Charlotte, they have been outfitting vehicles with charging stations.

    Sep 18, 2016
  • anon

    Every morning when we have a service talk I bring up what procedures to take when battery dies halfway through your route. The response I get from managers and supervisors to take the battery out and put it back in. In my experience this only gives the scanner up an extra 3 minutes of Lifetime until it die for good. When I explain to them that removing the battery and putting it back in is not the solution. Their responses will be " failure for following instructions is there answer. Not fair to the customers not fair to the employees and performance

    Sep 15, 2016
  • anon

    Alexandru, Thank you for your feedback. In an effort to help better understand the process could you please describe the steps management advises you to take in removing the battery? Your information is very valuable to us.

    Sep 16, 2016
  • anon

    Thank you all for your comments. Please continue to communicate various functionality issues with the MDD's. It will help our audit. We want to make sure we understand the issues. So far, the issues include: - Battery life - Scanning problems (weather conditions) - Delivery notifications Let us know if we're missing issues that will help the project. Thanks.

    Sep 14, 2016
  • anon

    New scanners are faster, but they do lock up (crash) and require a reboot. Batteries life is too short. Also some of our scanners will not transmit

    Sep 14, 2016
  • anon

    R. Rucker, Are you experiencing the scanners locking up frequently? What steps are you advised to take in regards to rebooting the device? Thank you for your feedback and please feel free to continue engaging with us in our Audit Asks.

    Sep 16, 2016
  • anon

    The batteries just don't last through the day during peak season in our office. I expect with the added function of carrier tracking, scanning mail pieces, dog warnings, and another year of cycles on the batteries we are going to miss many package scans this year. We have enough scanners at my office of about 100 city and rural carriers, but we don't have an extra 100 batteries. They don't scan great when a barcode is in bright sun or half sun and half shade, but no scanner ever has. The other suggestion I would have is under the delivery choice "Undeliverable As Addressed" to have a submenu of the most common reasons like IA, UTF, ANK, and NMR.

    Sep 14, 2016
  • anon

    No they don't work good. I will be on one street and it asks to confirm an address on a street a block away. It also will ask for a house after you just delivered it

    Sep 13, 2016

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