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Old 28. May 2016, 03:53 PM   #171 (permalink)
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I'm going to perhaps be contentious.
I would not call smart phones computing devices, though I would possibly allow the name for tablets when they are used for more than browsing or watching films.
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Old 29. May 2016, 03:22 AM   #172 (permalink)
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My smart phone does more computing (CPU, GPU, communications, firmware, storage, multitasking, memory, input devices, etc.) than the microcomputers I used in the 1970s and the PCs I used in the 1980s.
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Old 29. May 2016, 12:56 PM   #173 (permalink)
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I'm not referring to the power of the processor.
I doubt very much that you would sit using your phone at the office to do 6 hours of computing.
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Old 29. May 2016, 01:47 PM   #174 (permalink)
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Using them in an office environment largely depends on two things:
  • Applications. Most of the applications I use don't run on phones. However, many people I know get by fine with only using a smart phone for ten hours a day.
  • Ergonomics. There are options for external input devices and monitors.

I'm not talking about processor power. I'm talking about the functionality supporting "computing" which is essentially a human activity enabled by using a computer system.

Here's some more details and that is without really looking at software features (OS and API):
  • CPU support for coprocessors
  • GPU can be used to offload non-graphical calculations
  • communications allow each device to have its own network
  • firmware supports enhanced security
  • storage can be internal and external, fixed and removable
  • multitasking options are continually improving on mobile devices
  • memory size is now sufficient for memory intensive applications like video processing
  • input devices are wider and more varied
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Old 29. May 2016, 05:11 PM   #175 (permalink)
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Good discussions guys.

A smartphone has a shortfall as its screen is small and it doesn't have a fullsize keyboard to type fast. It has been generally considered more as a content consumption device rather than a content creation device if without docking to other input/output devices.

This is a limit due to its small size but as a mobile computing device (yes, in terms of its processing power), a smartphone has great improvements over the years.

Depending on the mobile device you use, a smartphone, such as Lumia 950, can give you a PC-like experience that is powered by your phone as claimed by Microsoft. You can dock your smartphone and connect it a monitor, mouse and keyboard. It turns your smartphone into a PC-like work environment without using a laptop or a PC.

Without such docking devices, a mobile device will still be a mobile device but this article Why It's Finally Time To Embrace Your Mobile Device As An Effective Working Tool has a good conclusion below:

"We have the tendency to fetishize productivity, and the idea that we can get great work done anytime, anywhere is an alluring prospect that plays into this theme. Realistically, as far as our tools and our practices are concerned, we have not gotten there yet. This discrepancy between our ideals and the actual results, and the difficulty of the journey is the source of a lot of frustration and stress. To find relief, we need to adjust what it means to be productive, but also refrain from being content with merely consuming content on mobile."
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Old 29. May 2016, 08:24 PM   #176 (permalink)
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It has always been possible to replace a desktop within limitations but the main issue is that the cost of portable technology makes it a poor economic decision for most of us.

For many years I tried to use only portable devices. For example, twenty-five years ago I was doing a lot of my computing on a tiny HP 95LX.

The main issue for me wasn't the lack of functionality, which I could adjust to, but the cost of extending the functionality of the base device. It was just not economic to get the features I needed on a highly portable platform. Peripheral devices and storage were more expensive and I continually needed to upgrade to the newest platform. At the sharp end of portable computing, the incremental cost for many features was ten times that of the desktop platform. In many ways, this issue has not really changed.

I've also used a lot of portable desktops, what we'd call "laptops". Back in 1989 I was using the first properly multitasking version of Windows on a Compaq Portable 386: sewing machine size and so power hungry it needed mains power. The cost of such portable desktops was often horrendous. It says a lot that my wife, who is not interested in technology, can still remember the price of that Compaq.
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Last edited by Remah; 29. May 2016 at 08:25 PM. Reason: Grammar fix
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Old 29. May 2016, 09:23 PM   #177 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burn-IT View Post
I'm not referring to the power of the processor.
I doubt very much that you would sit using your phone at the office to do 6 hours of computing.
Some people I know would sit using their phones for 6 hours straight... during a meeting
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Old 29. May 2016, 11:30 PM   #178 (permalink)
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I remember when the Compaq became available and had one for use when I was on call. They had rather small screens and I used them for dial up remote 3270 simulation more than as a PC in its own right.

A 6 hour meeting! is far too long. A training session would be more likely and I collect all mobiles before I start and anyone who hides one and it goes off gets thrown off the course and is reported to the company who sent them.
I remember far too well being sent on a two week training course to some hotel in the Wye Valley when my wife was well pregnant. I had asked not to go, but was pressured into it and assured that I WOULD be taken off the on call list.
My wife was called 6 times at night during the first week and they even sent a driver to the Hotel with core dumps and program listings for me to crack during the second week. That was why I left that company as I spent more night at work than in bed.
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Old 30. May 2016, 03:18 AM   #179 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jojo Yee View Post
Without such docking devices, a mobile device will still be a mobile device but this article Why It's Finally Time To Embrace Your Mobile Device As An Effective Working Tool has a good conclusion below:

"We have the tendency to fetishize productivity, and the idea that we can get great work done anytime, anywhere is an alluring prospect that plays into this theme. Realistically, as far as our tools and our practices are concerned, we have not gotten there yet. This discrepancy between our ideals and the actual results, and the difficulty of the journey is the source of a lot of frustration and stress. To find relief, we need to adjust what it means to be productive, but also refrain from being content with merely consuming content on mobile."
That's true. We cannot compare 2 hours real productivity with 6 hours of non-sensical chit-chat via whatsapp with random friends. The problem is some big companies thought mobile was a safe bet in this "post-PC era", but then faced the bitter truth. Case in point: Intel. They lost their ARM wrestling match, and kicked out Atom (Code-Named “SoFIA”) mobile chips. Now that's a difficult journey and a source of a lot of frustration and stress.

Not even subsidizing some Android tablets helped them to gain any market share beyond 1%. In fact, Intel's biggest losses came from the mobile division rather than the desktop processor division, which is still very profitable. Sadly, as this article puts it, "The company thought nettops and netbooks would be a niche market for Atom, not the chip’s primary platform. Atom and its successors were supposed to launch an armada of Mobile Internet Devices, or MIDs. (...) The company envisioned an ecosystem of netbooks and MIDs driven by its own custom x86 architecture, a goal the press dubbed “x86 everywhere.”

Now, Intel said its efforts will seek to leapfrog phones and focus on 5G, machines, and the infamous "internet of things". Only time will tell if this move really pays off for Intel after their WI-MAX fiasco.
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Old 30. May 2016, 09:08 AM   #180 (permalink)
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Forgetting about the technology issues but looking at the personal ones, I used to see stacks of folks here with tablets but it was obvious how conscious they were about what to do with this new thing they were lugging around. Despite being regarded as a Luddite I am somewhat vindicated now as tablet sales continue to decline ("greatest annual decline to date of -21.1%") and now I hardly see any in use when out and about.

https://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS40990116

The detachable market continues to expand however and many more users are seeing these as a PC replacement simply because they are suitable for normal every day use, especially the smaller iPad Pro which is a lot more convenient to carry around. For many folks who need this for work however, a decent netbook such as the Toshiba I have or a desktop PC are still a better option.

The projected sales of tablets when they were first brought to the market were way out. Maybe the projections for detachables are more accurate but IMO the technology will need to improve further before laptops and PC's can be written off altogether.

The wearables market also continues to expand which proves folks still have more money than sense.
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