As we become increasingly mobile, we’ve created a number of devices that can connect us from wherever we travel. In this video, you’ll learn about tablets, smart phones, wearable technology, e-readers, and much more.
One of the fastest growing segments of mobile devices is tablets. These tablets are usually running an iOS or Android operating system, and the screens are usually seven inches or larger in size. The interface on these tablets uses touch, so you use your finger or stylus to be able to input information, and it might even bring up a virtual keyboard on the screen that you can use to type information into the tablet. The operating systems on these tablets allow us to perform many different functions. There’s productivity applications, games, and they’re used for many types of audio and video media.
Our smartphones have turned into the ultimate communication device. We can send email messages, we can perform voice communication, we can do video conferences, all in a form factor the ranges usually between 3 1/2 inches to 5.5 inches diagonal. This is also a very good media viewer as well. So the same functionality you might use for a tablet, you can also do in a very small mobile device such as a smartphone. These smartphones are also useful when traveling. They can provide a map or directions on how to get from one place to the other, or give you details on your travel arrangements. There’s also a number of other applications available for productivity use, games, and much more.
We’re also wearing more mobile technologies these days. A good example are the smart watches that we see that’s helping to bridge the gap between our bodies and our smartphones. There’s also a number of fitness monitors available on the market that can connect to your body and give you information about your heart rate. It can track how much you run or step throughout the day, and it can tell you how well you’re sleeping throughout the night. We’re also starting to see mobile devices that can integrate with our eyes so that we’re able to overlay a virtual world into our real world, or have access to information through glasses that we might put on our head.
There’s an interesting segment of mobile devices that’s not quite a phone, and it’s not quite a tablet. This particular segment is one we’re calling a phablet. This is one that’s usually a device that’s 5 1/2 inches to about seven inches in diagonal. So it’s not very small, but it’s not as full sized as a normal tablet might be. This is a nice niche that fits right between those two segments, so that you can have a very large screen, but still have a more mobile device that you could take almost anywhere.
Another mobile device that fits very nicely into a niche is for people that like to read a lot of books. These are e-readers, and they’re usually designed for book reading, although many e-readers can also provide some music and application use as well. One common feature of e-readers is that it uses something called electronic paper. This is a black and white screen, there’s not usually any color on these electronic paper screens, and they work extremely well even in direct sunlight. They also have a very long battery life, because there’s generally no battery use unless the information on the screen changes. There’s also network functionality built into these e-readers, so whether you’re using a cellular network or a Wi-Fi network, you’re able to download a book and begin reading it almost immediately.
Although many of us use our smartphones to be able to take pictures, there are some of us that would like some additional functionality and higher resolutions that you can only get in a smart camera. This is the traditional digital camera that these days can also work as a video recorder as well. These are usually running an Android operating system or some other type of high powered OS, and it’s doing all of the image processing right on the camera itself. There are a number of nice features associated with these smart cameras. There’s usually a nice touch screen interface on the large LCD that’s on the back of the camera. Some cameras have a wireless network connection so you can take a picture and immediately post it to social media. And some cameras can even recognize a human face or even see your eyes so that when it takes a picture, it can avoid catching your eyes when they might be closed.
There’s also a large market of mobile GPS devices that we can move from vehicle to vehicle and give us directions on where we might be going. These require a view of the sky so that they can hear the GPS signals from the satellites. And of course when things change with streets or directions, we may need to update these devices. And most of them allow an over the air update or an update through a memory card that we would put into the GPS device.