The future vision for the dental office will be computers assigned not to rooms but to people. Each team member and the dentist will be able to roam freely about the office with a portable computer that is always connected wirelessly to the office network and beyond to the Internet.
The tablet PC drives this transformation. There are two basic tablet styles, slates and convertibles. The convertible has a keyboard the slate does not. Convertibles seem to be more useful while maintaining the extreme portability of the tablet design.
A key feature to tablets is the use of touch screens and inking. That means a user can easily enter information by tapping on the screen with one hand while holding the tablet in another. Ink allows users to write or draw on the screen just as if it was a piece of paper.
Check out the HP TC1100 shown here.
Battery life: Will need re-charging several times during the day.
Wireless network: wireless rocks, however it is still unreliable, slow compared to wired Cat5 Ethernet and subject to security problems.
Image capture: It may not be possible to use some digital capture devices.
Safety: In a busy office dropping or “losing” the tablet could become a problem.
Limited Experience: This seems like a great idea but it hasn’t been done yet that I know of. If you want to show the patient their smile do you give it to them?