What are some examples of applications where tablets and smartphones have/might replace dedicated display/input mechanisms?



  • Browsing the web: if you have an iPad, you almost fully stop doing it on your desktop (especially now that iOS 6 and Google Chrome are out)
  • Handheld console gaming
  • Standalone console gaming (the iPad may not have come very far on that route, yet, but it is on its way, as this article, among others, suggests: http://www.theverge.com/2012/6/2…)
  • Medical documentation and assessment, patient care (http://medcitynews.com/2011/11/5…)
  • Interactive information displays: Museums use this a lot already: the iPad is being put into a case that locks the Home button, therefore only displaying the content that it should display; another good example is McDonald's using it as an info display/surf station in its fancier restaurants.
  • Small/children's room television sets: Many people already use the iPad as a second (third, fourth) TV; something that people used an HTPC and a display or a standalone PC in a kid's room for before.
  • Blogging/publishing/writing: I know a few people who have already adapted to the zero feedback of the keyboard of the iPad and are almost ten-fingers quick at typing their content.
  • Textbooks/learning: From iBooks to proprietary apps, there are a lot of learning institutions encompassing the iPad into their learning/distribution of learning materials.
  • Children's entertainment and learning: There are already thousands of edutainment apps for preschoolers out there.
  • Consumer photo editing: Once the domain of simple Paint-like programs, then a mass adoption of basic Photoshop started, iPhoto took over and now it's iPhoto on the iPad. AI allows edits which were much too complex for beginners just a couple of years ago (even with great input devices) and consumers embrace it – without needing input devices.
  • Social networking: Sounds almost a bit too obvious, but ask anyone who uses both Facebook and an iPad – they'll tell you that they almost never switch on their computers to do some Facebook.
  • Note taking: As basic as it is, would we have believed if anyone would have told us seven years ago that in the near future we would not use a keyboard or a pencil anymore for taking notes? (Thanks, Evernote!)
  • Document display: Before tablets, dedicated display/input systems were the only ones you could use to display a presentation or a PDF to someone at work. Now that that's changed, tablets are taking over.
  • Information search: Very close to the browsing I wrote about above, it's obvious that many people are turning to apps when they look for information, rather than using a traditional PC with a browser – Wikipedia is a good example.
  • Shopping online: Before Tablets (and smartphones), there was no other way to enter your information than to use a traditional display/input system. Today, eBay already makes about 10 billion dollars from mobile purchases (http://allthingsd.com/20120718/e…). One reason for this is that for an online shopping experience to satisfying, a beautiful and 'haptic' experience is way more important than fluent text input.

I could go on like this for ages, but maybe I am just a mobile enthusiast…(,

See the answer on Quora:

What are some examples of applications where tablets and smartphones have/might replace dedicated display/input mechanisms?


Will Google make Maps available as a standalone app for iOS 6?

I think that strategically, it would make a lot of sense for Google to release a standalone App.

Apple’s efforts to ban their opponent from their closed system have gotten more and more rigorous, but as we see with Chrome for iOS, the Search Giant is shooting back. Google is sure – just like Apple – that they have the superior product, and that is why they see the release of Google Chrome for iOS as a key link to their own infrastructure. The same goes for Google Maps, even though the conversion rate is not as high as with a browser, because users can get a very good user experience out of using a maps app without signing in for personalized features. But still, it makes sense, because in such an app, Google could integrate, say, Google+ and other services (now that they aren’t being told by Apple how that app has to look anymore) to convert more and more users to their services.

So yes, of course they should make a standalone Maps app for iOS 6. Will they? Hard to say. I’d bet on yes. At least a simple one.

//Edit: As reported a coule of days ago, the licensing contract between Apple and Google regarding the YouTube app for iOS has also expired, resulting in Google developing a standalone version of its popular video service for iOS (source: http://www.engadget.com/2012/08/…).

See the answer on Quora:

Will Google make Maps available as a standalone app for iOS 6?

Should HTC rebrand itself?

Ask yourself one question: What does HP mean to consumers?

The answer is: a lot. The brand is heavily associated with lots of connotations. This is because of the companies' large brand heritage. So is HTC.

Remember: a couple of years ago (or a couple more) most people didn't even know HTC. Then they knew them as innovators. Now they know them as that business brand that's not sexy anymore and fails to stay up to par with the other companies because of its update-averse system UI. But the brand still has a lot of heritage as an innovator. They are 'one of the great' companies in the mobile computing business.

The first false assumption here is that, for a brand which already exists for some time now and has created a decent brand awareness with its stakeholders, a rebranding always helps.

Rebranding a company costs millions of dollars, and – to a business in decline like HTCs –  can also be a massive threat. Brand recognition, brand sympathy – all those are connected, deeply linked to your brand name.

When most people think about a name change they tend to think most about what they would like better about a new name, about what chances a new name opens for a company. They tend to think less about the connections lost. If HTC were a young company just now entering the consumer market, I would also suggest to them to get a name that fits better (by the way: 'age-tee-cee' is not the worst acronym you can have).

Ask yourself this: would it make sense for HP to rename? If not, why? They also have a struggling hardware business and are desperately seeking for new orientation and a new vision for their company.

So, the real question we should ask ourselves, is: 'Should HTC rebrand itself today, under the given circumstances?'

Yes, HTC would benefit from having a different name.

No, HTC would not benefit from a rebranding now and under the given circumstances it faces today.

Rebranding does not always make sense. Here's one of the many nice little articles about failures in rebranding.


If HTC have a good advisor, he'll tell them what they need is a new R&D strategy and what they don't need is a new brand, even if that advisor makes less money by doing so.

See the answer on Quora:

Should HTC rebrand itself?