I think I acquitted myself well at the meeting today. The only point I made that ran up against opposition was the one about showing us the customer name. The main objection was, "but it's too haaaaarrrrdddd." I found that some of my suggestions had already been addressed by the higher-ups.
The manager who was running the meeting started talking about how GPS should be incorporated into the new units, and for a few minutes he and I went off on a tangent talking about the potentials of using GPS in such a device. Everyone else was stone silent; I don't think anyone else had ever used a GPS device and no one understood what we were talking about.
If you're a customer, you might be wondering if this is worth the money. I guess that's up to you to decide, but...the old units are old and are having problems: primary batteries that won't keep a charge, a back-up system that doesn't work on many of the units, and a contract with a company that can takes weeks to make a simple repair like replacing a broken screen. Also, the recent addition of the other water company has introduced further logistical problems because they use a different make of handheld. They want to get everyone on the same unit. Also, any new contract will include a 3-year commitment to replacing worn-out batteries and broken screens for free.
If you're wondering why screens get broken, you should try doing this job and see how long you can go before you trip over a hidden obstacle and fall down.* I've never broken the screen on mine, but one look at all the scratches on it would tell you that I've fallen down and dropped it many times.
*I think the worst offender is the "retracting" sprinkler head that no longer retracts. Those things just kill me. They're essentially invisible until you crash into one.