Does anyone know of a touch screen laptop computer. I know there are some tablets, but I am interested in a laptop system that has a touch screen capability. Thanks for your help
90% of tablets are actually convertibles that switch between a laptop mode where the keyboard is out and the screen is up, and tablet mode where the keyboard swings underneath the screen. I do not know of any pure laptop that does not switch into tablet mode, and I really doubt there is one as it wouldn’t make sense from a marketing standpoint. A simple hinge would give them the option of it being both.
Here is a video showing how an hp tablet switches and works. I have several of these that we use for demos and loan to local inspectors to try out: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GDRbnNIbFaY
There are several tablets we recommend to our inspectors. For those on a budget, check out http://www.clearanceclub.com , they often have refurbished or even brand new tablets at up to half off. They have some good ones right now for $850! Actualy model wise, the main players are Fujutisu, HP (like the TC4400), and the latest one which personally I think is a great deal, is ASUS R1F. Asus is a motherboard manufacturer which is branching out to tablets and other systems. You can read a review on the ASUS here: http://www.xbitlabs.com/articles/mobile/display/asus-r1f.html
Once you figure out what model you want make sure to get a good warranty as you’re likely to be banging it up. For the best prices check out comparison sites like cnet.com, froogle.com and pricewatch.com. Make sure to take shipping into consideration as some of the sites will low ball the tablet price and charge high shipping costs.
Panasonic makes many versions of laptops with touch screen technology. I bought a slightly used older model (CF-27) that has the feature. It is made tough enough you can hammer nails with it. Screen is small 11 inches) but ideal for many applications; home inspections, GPS, combat and of course, hammering nails. It is dust proof, water proof and very rugged. Prepare to spend some bucks if you go with a new one but you can get a very good deal on slightly used ones all day long off the internet. Many police dept. and corporations trade them in after a year for the newest models. Most have built in internet access as well. Check out Ebay but watch who you buy from. Beware of the Nigerians bastagges.
Wow. Thanks Doug. I’ve never seen one of those before! The CF-27 looks like it is a pretty old machine (PIII, 128MB of ram). Do you know what the line of newer models is called?
Yeah. CF-73 is one. There are numerous different models; tablets, laptops, laptops that convert into a tablet. You can find just about anything you could want; one with all the latest bells and whistles or a roughed out model with basic components. Top of line will costs you around $7k but you can find many that have only been slightly used by a little old lady on Sundays. Go to the Panasonic website and look at their models. Ive had the 27 for years, still works fine. I have about 5 computers so it doesn’t get out much anymore. Bought a new 17 inch laptop last year for doing Adjusting work. Big screens spoil you, especially doing graphics and AutoCAD stuff.
Not a touch screen but check this thing out. http://laptoping.com/vulcan-flipstart.html
Don’t buy the CF-71, 72 or 73. This is not a field based laptop. It is stronger then other laptops out there, but I wouldn’t recommend it for Home Inspectors. Trust me, I worked for the company for 10 years. Your best bet would be the CF-30 or the CF-19 or even a used CF-28 or 29 are solid. These would be your best choices today. E-mail me if you have any questions. Check out http://www.panasonic.com/business/toughbook/fully-rugged-computers.asp for some specs, then try e-bay for some prices. Good Luck!
Good post, thanks for the insider info. Ive beat the snot out of my old 27 w/o any problems. When I bought mine it was like new condition and I only paid a couple hundred for it. It had belonged to a police outfit and perfect for field work.
This is going to be my next gadget. Very compact.
I’m hoping to get one soon too. I think these will really hurt the PDA market. Everything is going to become smartphone or ultra compacts since they run the full version of xp or vista. I’d go with xp though as vista takes more ram to run effectively.
I’m not sure how much the UMPCs are going to hurt the PDA market. They are really 2 different markets. Many of the vertical markets using PDAs are markets that are looking for a SIMPLE operating system type of handheld device that have LONG battery life (all day), INSTANT on/off capabilities and a price range of around $500 or less. These devices are for doing data collection that a simple electronic clipboard and form are needed…there really is no need for a full-blown (bloated) XP or Vista operating system. For collecting text, voice recordings or pictures the much simpler Windows Mobile operating system is much better suited. The UMPCs are trying to shove an operating system that was never meant to be used on such a small screen and that is where the difficulties will arise…using a toothpick type stylus to pick tiny menu items on a full PC operating system type application would not be something I would be excited about trying to use…and with the new Windows Mobile 6 devices coming out that have even nicer and bigger screens I think it may be the other way around…that the UMPCs may be in trouble…not the PDAs. . Just my 2 cents.
Group Mobile http://www.groupmobile.com/ was at the ITA convention in Vegas this month. Pretty impressive “rugged” tablets and laptops designed for field work. I use a **Motion **tablet that I love, and have used Fujitsu also. I’m a tablet guy because I like carrying it around the inspection process instead of coming back to the kitchen table to type. You can also buy a docking station and keyboard to use it like a regular computer in the office. Hope this helps.
there are also alot of mini tablets comming out like the Samsung Q1
I don’t think that PDA’s will dissapear per-se, I just think the class of PDA ‘only’ is merging with smartphones like the Treo or the iPhone. It’s been very unfortunate to watch the Palm OS loose marketing share quickly over the last few years to Windows Mobile. I have had a Treo for almost 10 years. Last year I got both a Treo 700p (runs Palm) and Treo 700w (runs windows mobile). I constantly have to reboot the 700w as it locks up and runs out of ram quickly and has all sorts of bluetooth issues. The 700p runs flawlessly but Palm itself is even putting Windows Mobile on some of its hardware. Palm truely was instant on/off while Windows Mobile is still struggling to run smoothly, but gaining market share. Hopefully Palm’s new transfer to a Linux based OS will help them, but that is doubtful, especially with Apple joining the market now. Their latest try at the Palm Folio was killed before it was even released.
I do see the UMPC’s quickly dropping in price the new Fujitsu is under $1000 right now and could easily drop a few hundred more by the beginning of next year. The nice thing about them is once you are ready to buy a new one you can pass them on to your kids to use for school. The battery life definitely needs some improvement, but that is getting better with some already having a 5 hour battery life. With the faster processors the machines definitely have more power than a PDA does as well. The 5-7" screens are definitely a perk as well. For those interested in UMPC’s check out a site like http://onlyumpc.com/