Thursday, August 04, 2005

Has the Notebook-to-Handheld Conversion Begun?

CNET posits the question - will handhelds one day replace the notebook PC? The article notes that in some corporate pockets, companies are either undergoing or considering such a move.

One reason is today's smartphones and other mobile devices are more sophisitcated, combining phone capabilities with better email and Internet connectivity and applications. Plus, they are more prevalent too. The article cites research from Canalys that said "12.2 million devices that could be classified as smart phones shipped in the second quarter."

Other favorable factors include better data networks and the ability to access "corporate applications such as databases and customer relationship management (CRM) software."

Roger Kay at Endpoint Technologies Associates also states cost is a huge part of the equation. A desktop PC and a mobile device costs less than a notebook, even more so if there is a carrier subsidy for the device. Kay said, "As a usage model, it makes a lot of sense. For certain kinds of users--power users--they want the best PC experience, which is a desktop. And they want mobility."

As a consultant, I try to carry my notebook as little as possible, since I made the mistake of puchasing a heavy desktop replacement notebook when my last computer died. My Audiovox SMT5600 smartphone suffices most of the time for light email and web surfing, but on occasion (i.e. travel or working during downtime between meetings) I need to lug the notebook along as well. Of course, once I find the perfect mobile device with a keyboard, wi-fi and high-speed network capabilities, then the notebook will stay at home...permanently.

via CNET