Healthcare industry needs a Mini-Tablet


The healthcare industry has the types of numbers that should attract Tablet PC OEMs but this article on Yahoo News shows that they have so far failed to do so.  PDA makers have done a better job penetrating this sector but are not very successful due to the small size of the typical PDA screen.  Tablet PCs haven’t made an impact with healthcare professionals due to the large size of the typical Tablet. 

Hello, is anybody listening?  Make a Tablet PC that is a size between the smallest Tablet PC and the largest PDA, couple it with good software specific to healthcare (patient records, medical reference, etc.), and I can virtually guarantee you will sell more Mini-Tablets than you can manufacture.  Why doesn’t the industry get it?



I’ve been trying to answer this question at the medical school I workfor. It’s true, PDA screens are too small for qualitative work. Tablets are too big to fit in the lab coat pocket. That is the primary concern as well- it must fit in the lab coat pocket. I’m starting to think that either pockets need to get bigger or flexible screens need to make it to the marketplace.


i can definitely see the use of mini-tablets in the school environment, as i currently try and use a pocket pc to write notes and so on. its not that windows mobile has no capabilty, simply that the screen is too small for you to really scrawl on it. in addition, excel is rendered useless for complex formulae due to the screen and program limitations.
i’m guessing if anyone does it, it may well be apple and the whole “iTablet” idea.


Although I agree that the mini-Tablet would be ideal, not just for doctors but for people like me who teach and give presentations all the time, there are options in between a PDA and a Tablet PC. There are a few 8 inch Windows CE.Net devices out there (MiniNote, the Siemens SIMPad, Fujitsu Pencentra and others) that could be better for doctors (instant on, etc).


The article had some interesting points- a PDA screen just wasn’t feasible for on-screen form work and a Tablet PC screen was too big to carry the device around. It makes sense to me that a mid-size Tablet is what these folks need.


I just saw my doctor, and he told me they were going to go all-electronic with the records. They hadn’t decided whether to do PDAs or Tablets or stations in various rooms. They are leaning toward the tablets, which makes a lot of sense to me. They don’t want to have to log in everytime they use a station (although with biometric security it might be easy), and the PDA screens are a bit small. (And he didn’t say anything to me, but tablets should be easier to write on also.)

I think they have a good chance of making it work (even if it slows them down for a while), because they already keep much neater and better organized records than my previous doctors did.

But as far as a mid-size screen between PDA and Tablet, it seems to me that once it’s bigger than a PDA, you can’t put it in a pocket, so you might as well have a regular sized tablet, or one like the smaller HP tablets. Plus, I think it would still need the Tablet type of touch screen to make it “friendly” for doctors to use.

The next issue is that if all this info becomes available in e-form, how do you keep it private. All the “advantages” of sharing may overwhelm people’s concerns about privacy until it’s too late. I think that’s what insurance companies are hoping for!

Mike Cane

Come on! The “industry” NEVER gets a damned thing until STEVE JOBS decrees it. Ninety-nine cent music downloads. A human-friendly MP3 player. Mac Mini.

Pray for Apple to do a Mobile Mac/Mac2Go…

…Apple, buy OQO and stuff a G4 and OS X into it!

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