All the product direction information I have heard has aimed the Ultra-Mobile PC squarely at the consumer market. The Tablet PC has been seen as the business device, yet has had a pretty good acceptance at the conumer level. In the back of my mind, I have had this continuing question; why would a mobile business professional not want to take advantage of this device? I offer the following as to why in my role as a business traveller I WOULD want an Ultra-Mobile PC:
Portable – When I travel, I spend a lot of time thinking through what I need on each trip to blance need with available space and weight. I have in my life traveled with a 30 pound luggable (internationally no less), and the thought of having a small Ultra-Mobile PC is very appealing. I have come a long way to arrive at my Toshiba M200, but it is still just a bit too big. Reducing the weight in that bag I carry on internationl trips is not good — it is GREAT. Depends on the trip, but I venture to say that a lot of the time I could survive without my Tablet PC.
My software – When I am on the move, my main needs are for Outlook, OneNote, and Mind Manager. All three have announced support for this device and should be a good experience on the Ultra-Mobile Pc. Add functionality like TEO, and it gets even better.
Rugged? – While this still remains to be seen, I honestly feel that the Ultra-Mobile PC’s that come out will be pretty tough. I need that when I am on the move. Plus replacement costs are much lower if I do happen to have an “oops” moment or get it stolen.
Convergence – I don’t use a PDA anymore (Smart phone killed that need), but I do need a GPS on occasion. I need a computer. I have a phone that works well for me. What I see in the Ultra-Mobile PC is a device that is getting closer to letting me have my all in one device, with the exception of the phone. Having all the software mentioned above in one unit that can go with me is great, but you converge the webcam, camera, gps, mp3, movies, etc. in one smaller device – and I am getting happier all the time. I want a separate phone and high quality camera, but they MUST be able to synch with my Ultra-Mobile PC. We are just about there folks!
Grab and go – This concept was introduced with the Tablet PC, but has not been fully realized. Seems to me Microsoft should add that to the marketing talk points for this device. This is a device I can actually “grab and go” with. One of my working scenarios as a network engineer is to be at a client site, possible going to 20 or more computers. I just cannot lug my M200 with me the whole time, so end up losing the chance to make some good notes I need, on project progress, etc. It is just too big. An Ultra-Mobile PC would allow that. That is true grab and go, being able to grab it with one hand and take it with you, whether you are traveling 3 feet or 3000 miles.
At any rate, this is just a reflection on what I have been thinking, but there are lots of other reasons. What reasons would make you want one of these as a business person? Let’s focus on why you WOULD, not why you would not, and see what kind of creative ideas come fourth There are issues with performance, battery life, etc., but let’s not focus on those quite yet.
Waiting to hear your thoughts on GottaBeMobile.com….