Grocery shopping with a Tablet PC: the experiment


M200 Jezlyn over at Late to the Party is trying everything possible to help her decide on a new mobile device. Will it be a Toshiba Tablet PC? How about the upcoming new Asus UMPC? Will she say heck with it all and just buy a lifetime supply of Post-It notes??? ;)

Well, there’s nothing better than use cases or usage scenarios, so Jezlyn took her current Tablet, a Toshiba M200 (good choice BTW), for a little grocery shopping excursion. We never recommend taking Tablets to the grocery store because they’re just like kids; everytime you’re not looking, they snag something bad to eat off the shelves and sneak it into the cart. Luckily, Jezlyn kept a good eye on her Tosh. So good in fact, that she stayed closer to the cart than ever before while shopping, just to play it safe.

After writing out a shopping list in MindManager, the experiment ensued, all without a hitch. The entire point of the exercise was to simulate shopping with an UMPC on hand, and although the M200 is much bigger and probably not best suited for this, it sounds like the test passed to me. On a personal note: we see that Jezlyn propped up her M200 in the child seat area of the cart yet there is no mention of using the safety strap. For heaven’s sake people: secure your mobile devices, would ya? ;)

(via GottaBeMobile)




I’ve shopped with a Tablet, but I felt a bit ostentatious. I used to note shopping items on my OrangeGuava desktop all the time, hoping that the frequent opportunities to glance at the reminder would help me to remember at the store (without whipping out the computer). I have thought that my UMPC would make it out of the bag more often for that kind of thing; we’ll know in a few months.

When I carried my Axim around, I would use ShopEZ. I’m probably going to see if that app will run on my PPC-6700; I still have the lists I created years ago.

Ultimately, I go shopping with my TPC all the time, but it rarely comes out of the bag. I simply cannot leave it in the car, and leaving it at home isn’t really an option for me…except right now, while I’m borrowing a Motion LE1600; even I’m not crazy enough to carry two tablets (most of the time).

John in Norway

That should be ‘Oh for an au pair’. I seem to make more mistakes when using a keyboard than when I ink!

John in Norway

I used to use my Jasjar. I made a default shopping list in MobileExcel and then on the day of shopping I would rename it and tick off what I wanted. This helped me to remeber what I needed so I would get the Jasjar out before I went to the till to make sure I had everything. That’s all moot now though because my Jasjar is dead. Back to a piece of paper and pen! Oh for au pair!


I wish I had a UX50 to try this experiment with! :) Yeah, I used to shop with my Clie a lot. Handyshopper is an awesome product (avail for palm OS and Pocket PC) for that.

If/when I go out shopping w/ my tablet again, I’ll carry it with me instead of leaving it in the kid seat. But I think I’ll have to just go back to my trusty pocket Moleskine again (or get a PDA phone!). :)


I tried this with both a Sony U50 and an OQO model 01 and I quickly realized that a Treo 650, Black Berry, or other PDA-like or smartphone device was better suited for this environment.

Comments are closed.