[FoRK] Hospital orders 100 iPads

Christopher Herot cherot at herot.com
Thu May 6 09:28:30 PDT 2010


The tablet form factor is particularly well suited to fields such as health
care where the user is not working at a desk.  On a recent visit to one
large hospital organization I saw half a dozen tablet devices they were
evaluating, but it took someone with the scale of Apple to make something
for $500 that has a nice big color screen. Of course it doesn't have ports
to plug in all those USB-connected devices and requires a proprietary
Apple-specific chip to build a Bluetooth device, but those are solvable with
mere $$$.


The Citrix application gets around the problem of building iPad specific
apps by resurrecting an idea from the 1960's: time sharing. Only this time
around the screen is in color and the "terminals" are wireless.




From: fork-bounces at xent.com [mailto:fork-bounces at xent.com] On Behalf Of Jeff
Sent: Thursday, May 06, 2010 12:06 PM
To: Friends of Rohit Khare
Subject: [FoRK] Hospital orders 100 iPads




Anecdote: the eventual success of the tablet form factor, despite fierce
resistance and non-stop rationalization about it (customers don't really
want it, etc.) has been certain to me for at least 17 years. Back in the
early days of my first company, Active Paper, and before we had a product
roadmap in place, we were operating as a bespoke software developer for
folks that wanted PDA applications. Several of our initial customers were
medically-oriented companies, and they couldn't get enough of the Newton.
They could envision, even back then and on such a limited device, replacing
and enhancing many of their workflows, processes, etc. through the use of
such things.

Generally what we were building were prototypes for medical equipment
manufacturers, for demos and trade shows, etc. Their biggest requests, by
far? When is Apple going to release (a) a larger version of this thing, and
(b) a color version of this thing.

I'd really like to have a better hypothesis than I do for why it took so
long for industry to recognize the demand for this. Sure, there were
technological limitations, but for the better part of a decade we've been
able to build (and some, e.g. Motion Computing, have built) such things.
What particular confluence of events, technologies, and market awareness
have made this the time, rather than e.g. 2000?


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