I have been using InspectMate (originally Borealis) by Jeff Knight for about 3 years. I love it. I bought 3D prior and did not like it at all. I still sits in a drawer. InspectMate was designed for use on the hand held. I prefer the handheld over the PC due to portability. I can take it in a crawl space, an attic on the roof and input data without having to remember what I saw. Some people may not like the small screen (I use an Ipaq 210) but for portability, I would not change. I also use the HP 460 printer. I go through about 1 every 1 -2 years. Some Real Estate agents will hand me an SD card from their phone (micro, mini or full size) or camera and I will copy the report on site for them. If they have a PDA, I will just “bluetooth” it to them. I am now using a PDA phone so I can e-mail the report on site if need be.
As far as the software, I had developed my own report over the last 13 years and wanted the transition from paper to electronic be fairly seemless. I developed a template for the software and still tweek it on occasion for things that may come up for the first time (such as the first time we came across PEX plumbing). I’ve done over 8,000 inspections since 1/95 and it would be hard to convince me to change software. When my inspectors first made the change to InspectMate, they were really hesitant. In less than a week, they said they would never go back to paper. If I’ve ever had a glitch that I could not work out myself, Jeff Knight was always there to help me.
The cheaper cost of replacing a hand held, eliminating boot time needed for a PC, eliminating potential virus issues, the portability, etc are reasons I chose the hand held version. Jeff does make a version for the PC if you have a great memory and want to leave the PC in the kitchen while you move around the house.
By the way, I started in the trades in the mid 60’s, inspecting since '95, I’ve been the education chair for WAHI in Milwaukee since about '96.