1.3. Requirements and costs

1.3.1. Android clients: hardware requirements

The minimum Android SDK version is 16, meaning Android 4.1 (‘Jelly Bean’, released in 2012). For development, we have used:

  • Asus Transformer Prime TF201 (2011, running Android 4.1.1) — nice keyboard with an extra battery in it, though WiFi only with no 3G connection. (Its charger uses a non-standard USB specification that supplies 15V, rather than the standard 5V, so it can fail to charge properly if you plug a random USB charger into it! [1]
  • Sony Xperia Z2 tablet (2014; available in WiFi and 3G versions), with Bluetooth keyboard.

1.3.2. iOS clients: hardware requirements

  • We suggest an iPad or iPad mini; iPhones are probably just too small. CamCOPS has been tested on an iPad 2 and works fine.
  • A physical (e.g. Bluetooth) keyboard is useful if you plan on using the clinical clerking aspects or other tasks requiring significant typing.
  • Not much information is stored on the tablet (it’s shipped periodically to the server) so we think any model of iPad will do.

1.3.3. Desktop clients: hardware requirements

There are no specific hardware requirements. The CamCOPS client runs on the following desktop operating systems: Linux, Windows, and Mac OS/X.

1.3.4. Server: hardware and software requirements

There are no specific hardware requirements.

Operating system:

  • Developed for Linux.
  • Windows support is in development.

Web server:

  • CamCOPS provides a WSGI application and tools to serve it so an internal TCP/IP port or (under Linux) UNIX socket; it doesn’t care which web server you use as the front end.


  • CamCOPS uses SQLAlchemy so is fairly database-agnostic, though it does provide some custom date/time fields, currently specialized for MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server, and SQLite (though SQLite is for clients, not servers!).

1.3.5. Representative costs

We have set up CamCOPS in the low-cost environment of a research-active university that provides network support, with WiFi tablet access, and the high-cost environment of an NHS institution with a secure VPN (including 3G and WiFi access) and outsourced IT support. Here are some representative costs, in 2013, from those environments.

Component Low-cost university research environment High-cost NHS clinical environment
Server: setup and first year £0–£1,500 approx. Existing Linux server with Internet connection. SSL security certificate free via central university funding. Or a standard computer: e.g. Intel Xeon E3-blahblah 3.1 GHz, 16 Gb RAM, 2 Tb HD £793, plus some sort of keyboard/mouse/monitor, and a backup system. £5,771.81. Subcontracted virtual Linux server with managed backup. SSL security certificate (valid for 5 years). Changes to DNS/firewall to allow access to the NHS server from a partner NHS organization (selectively). Total £4,809.84 + VAT.
Server: maintenance £0. Power/network/SSL certificates via central university provision. £4,247.81. Ongoing annual server support costs £3,539.84 + VAT. (This excludes SSL certificate renewal: £260 + VAT every 5 years.)
Each tablet: purchase and first year £360–£400 approx. One option: Asus EeePad Transformer Prime TF201 (with keyboard): around £400. Another option: Apple iPad 2 (16 Gb, WiFi only) £329 from Apple. Bluetooth keyboard/case: lots to choose from, but some from around £30. £1,081. Apple iPad 2 (16 Gb, 3G, WiFi) £410 (inc. VAT). Bluetooth keyboard/case £50. MDM license £36. VPN token £315. VPN SIM £120. Support costs for first two years £300, i.e. £150 for first year.
Each tablet: maintenance £0. It doesn’t cost much to run a tablet. £150. Annual support costs (inc. VAT).
Software (CamCOPS, LAMP stack) £0. £0.