Evaluating my travel technology

My typical travel gear includes:

Lenovo T410S Laptop or Lenovo x201t Tablet PC – I go back and forth between these two machines. The T410S has a bigger screen, faster processor and more memory, but it’s not a tablet PC. The x201t is smaller, easier to use and I can take notes directly on the screen. The smaller size is especially important when I have a long flight; the T410S doesn’t fit well in the cattle-car seats on planes.

Motorola DROID – I love this phone and haven’t seen anything new to convince me to change, although I think I’ll have a Motorola DROID BIONIC shortly.

Kindle DX – Still nothing better than an e-ink screen for reading. Period. When I see a journal article worth reading I simple dump it in a “To Read” folder on my computer. Every so often I move those on to my Kindle DX and read them when I have down time. The DX’s large screen works well for PDFs.

Android Tablet (my rooted NOOK Color) – Games, email and social media in a small package with long battery life.

Verizon MiFi, a.k.a. “Mobile Hotspot” – Simply can’t live without connectivity

I recently purchased an HP TouchPad. It’s turned out to be a really nice tablet. I’ve enjoyed using it over the past few weeks.

On a recent trip to Cincinnati, OH I decided to leave my Kindle DX and Android tablet at home, and take the TouchPad instead. I used it for email, web surfing, social media and games; just like its Android counterpart. I tried using it for reading in place of the Kindle DX. It worked, but found that I like the e-ink screen better.

I’ve heard people say they use their tablets, specifically their iPads, for document creation, editing, etc. I managed to use the TouchPad to compose a blog post for another website while en route to Cincinnati, but I wouldn’t recommend doing it on a regular bases. Sure, I was able to create the post, but there were several things I missed. I’m not a natural writer and many of my blog posts go through several edits before getting pushed to the web. In my opinion a keyboard and mouse work better than a touchscreen for editing a document. Overall it worked, but certainly not as good as a laptop.

So, what’s the final verdict? The TouchPad could easily take the place of my Android tablet and my Kindle DX, but I still prefer the Kindle for reading. And you can forget about using something like the TouchPad in place of a laptop, it’s not even close.

2 thoughts on “Evaluating my travel technology”

  1. Hi Jerry, I just came across your blog and found this comment by you. ‘I love tablet PCs and think they are under-utilized in pharmacy. With that said, I think the iPad may have doomed my chances of advancing tablet PCs in our practice setting. I think we need both, but most people will take the “wow factor” of the iPad over the tablets. And I suppose anything to get this tool in pharmacists hands is a good thing. ”

    My question is, as apps for the ipad become more available and as products like Micromedex and Facts and Comparisons are accesible on the ipad, do you still feel that more than one handheld is required for research and patient education?

  2. Hello Hannah!

    You ask a good question. My simple answer is no. However, I do not believe that tablets like the iPad iOS), HP TouchPad (webOS), PlayBook (BlackBerry OS) and Galaxy Tab (Android OS) are the answer. An out of date, 5+ year old tablet PC can do as much in healthcare as any of the previously mentioned devices can (with a couple of modest differences based on newer technology). I believe the advent of the consumer tablet has done little to advance handheld practice in healthcare. Yes, they have become more prevalent, but they really don’t do anything that we were already doing years ago with Tablet PCs; in fact, they do less in some instances. I remember collecting patient data and accessing drug information on my Palm Pilot a decade ago. So, no, I do not believe you will need more than one handheld for research and patient education. Devices like the iPad and Galaxy Tab will be able to handle most of what you’re looking for; and they will continue to get better.

    In reality however, you never really needed more than one device, people have simply chosen to go back 10 years and start all over. Thanks for stopping by.

    Jerry

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