Smartphones and tablets are best visualized as content consumption devices and are not very good for data input. Entering data is possible, but you will be much more time efficient on a laptop or desktop than on a tablet. However, laptops may not be portable or accessible enough for all situations. The touch input for typing may be too slow to be effective. The small screen size and “thumbing” of messages on smartphones may be too cumbersome or time consuming. The weight of a tablet may be too heavy for people with hand problems or arthritis. However, on the whole, the portability and accessibility of smartphones and tablets make them useful tools.
A bright future
Imagination and creativity are the key limiting factors in your application of smartphones and tablets. If you can conceive it, it can be built. The new, portable Internet is making business and personal applications possible that were not conceived as little as one or two years ago.
Technology tools such as bar code scanning, credit card and RFID readers, and voice recognition are running better with each iteration and revision of the technology. Applications are being built that enable the platform. Make a list of what you would like to see done on your mobile platform. You will be pleasantly surprised at what is possible today. The future looks even brighter.