Hardware Mobile Tablet Computers

Handheld Asepsis

Computer hardware is crawling with germs!

The worst offenders in the techno germ category are handheld devices. We take them everywhere, are constantly touching them, pass them around to others, sneeze on them, sweat on them, and then we hold them against our face and mouth. Numerous studies have confirmed our handhelds are a prime source of nasty germs and disease transmission.

Patients are constantly pulling out their smart phones in the treatment rooms to check messages, tap in their next appointment then they hand it off to the dentist or the assistant to show us photos of their last vacation.

Increasingly we are handing iPads to patients to fill in forms, look at a radiograph or watch a patient education video.

The good news is that touch screens are a lot easier to clean than keypads but the bad news is that people are constantly touching them. There are four steps or options for cleaning and disinfecting your devices. However cleaning them can be tricky. You can’t just dip your Android in the cold sterile for five minutes. At least you can’t do it more than once. Manufacturers warn against using cleaners, aerosols, ammonia and abrasives on your device.

The simplest step is to simply wipe down the device with a moist microfiber cloth. This eliminates many forms of bacteria but not all.

The next level is to use an isopropyl alcohol wipe like Clens wipes from Bausch and Lomb. These are convenient but at around 75 cents each the cost can add up.

The third option is to make your own solution by mixing 70% isopropyl with distilled water. Using distilled water, higher concentration alcohol and avoiding things like fragrances makes for a cleaner solution with fewer chemicals or minerals left behind. Fill a spray bottle with the solution, moisten a lint free cloth (no paper tissues) and gently wipe the device. Do not spay the device directly. You can use small foam applicators to get into corners and crevices.

The fourth option is to use a sterilizer. Once again you can’t pop an iPhone into your Statum but there are ultraviolet systems designed for electronics. The Violife is just $65, it looks like a countertop coffee grinder and works with smart phones but is too small for tablets. You could even offer to sterilize patient’s phones as an added service while they are in the chair. That not only provides a benefit but it gets the phone out of their hands while they are being treated.

Another UV option is a sanitizing wand.  These inexpensive hand held devices are reported to kill up to 99.99% of germs and can be used for phones, tablets and even conventional mice and keyboards.

Future Tech Hardware Mobile Tablet Computers

The best tech of 2017

From Mashable:

More than any year in recent memory, 2017 saw the launch of many (mostly) gimmick-free tech products.

Source: The best tech of 2017

None of the 25 best tech items listed has a direct dental application however many could be used by dentists and dental team members. For example the Surface Laptop/Tablet, various smart phones, a micro SD disk and telephoto lens attachments that could turn a smart phone camera into an intraoral camera.

Cameras Future Tech Hardware Mobile Tablet Computers

The Best of CES 2017


The Consumer Electronics Show (now officially simply termed CES) turned 50 this year. And yet, rather than turn stale or start to fade into irrelevance, the 2017 show brought some genuine innovation we haven’t seen in quite a while. Sure, wacky gadgets and pointless prototypes are all over the place at CES, but this might be the year that many of them actually become reality.

Source: The Best of CES 2017 |

Fun for the tech nerd and some items that may have use in dentistry including laptops, desktops, cameras and VR headsets.

Tablet Computers

Tablet Computers

The Best Tablets of 2016


Whether you’re looking for an Android, Apple, or Windows tablet, here’s what to consider, along with our top-rated slates.

Source: The Best Tablets of 2016 |

Tablets have many uses in the dental office. Most commonly they are used in place of a clip board and paper for patients to register and fill out forms. Tablets may also be used by doctors and team members as a simple portable device to access charts and write notes or for patient education.

The Apple i-pad dominates the tablet market however new Android tablets and the combo laptop-tablet Surface from Microsoft are beginning to erode the i-pads dominance. The linked article gives ten options ranging in price from $50 to over $1,000.

Hardware Tablet Computers

Apple pulls latest iOS update from iPads after bricking reports


Following complaints that the iOS 9.3.2 update has bricked newer iPads, Apple pulled the latest update for the 9.7-inch iPad Pro…

While the company did not specify which iPads were affected by the update, multiple outlets have reported that the update is hamstringing the 9.7-inch iPad Pro and not the 12.9-inch version or other Apple devices.

Source: Apple pulls latest iOS update from iPads after bricking reports

e-Services Paperless Tablet Computers

Jakari Care – Going Paperless

JakariA new resource:

Intelligent tablet-based system issued to patients in the waiting room and used to collect, summarize and highlight important patient information for providers.

Source: Jakari Care – More time for great care.

I have looked at many of these kinds of products or services and in my opinion this is by far the best. However I need to be somewhat cautious as I have so far only demoed Jakari Care. I have not used it or spoken to current users. Assuming it works as advertised it is remarkable. ( I will do more research and follow up)

The core of the service is a robust online system of forms that can be used by patients at home or on a tablet in the office. What sets Jakari apart is the creative use of digital technology. For example they use branching logic to create a “smart” form. If a patient answers yes to having diabetes a whole new set of question is launched asking specific questions regarding their diabetic condition. If the patient answers no they never see those additional questions.

More to come.

For help going “paperless” look here:

For an other option check out YAPI Here.

Office Design Tablet Computers

XLDent, Electronic Dental Records with Surface

Recently, XLDent completed testing of the Microsoft Surface Pro 3 in a clinical environment.  We tested the tablet in several dental clinics in both treatment and hygiene rooms.  The feedback was fantastic!  Our test clinicians loved the portability, quality, performance, and ease-of-use.

Source: XLDent, Electronic Dental Records, Dental Practice Management Software, EHR, dental technology, dental computer software, digital patient records

I am a fan of the Surface. The more I use mine the better I like it.

Hardware Tablet Computers

I love my Microsoft Surface Pro

Hardware Tablet Computers

I have a new Surface Pro and it is great. A true blend of tablet and laptop that can run Dentrix.

Tablet Computers

Hardware Tablet Computers

Surface Pro 3

Woo Hoo, I got myself a sexy new Surface Pro 3.


I have Dentrix installed on it and so far I am very pleased.

Radiography Tablet Computers

Dexis go

DEXISgo_02-webDEXIS has announced the release of an updated version of the iPad app, DEXIS go 2.0. The update improves usability, aesthetics and image quality.

Added benefits

  • Seamless connection with DEXIS Mac
  • Faster image transfer
  • Simplified interface leading to clearer navigation
  • Expanded imaging browsing methods
  • Privacy enhancements
  • Extended connectivity for dental professionals who port their iPad to multiple practices

You can try out the new App; download it for free from the Apple® iTunes® store; it includes a set of sample patients and images and can be used even without having DEXIS Imaging Suite.

Anti-Buzz Tablet Computers

Anti-Buzz: It’s so easy.


Andrew has been writing Anti Buzz for 4 years resulting in almost 200 articles. For the next several weeks we will revisit some of these just in case you missed it.


The Buzz: Tablets are going to kill the traditional PC

The Anti-Buzz: No, it’s true.

If you are my age it is inevitable that the topic of kids and tablets come up; because you have kids and you have tablets, or you have friends who have kids and tablets, or you have friends who are disgusted that they have friends who have kids and tablets. Invariably, late night conversation turns to some anecdote about a 1-year old teaching himself to watch his favorite videos on his mom’s iPad – which I’m not so sure how amazing this is since when I was very very tiny my top priority was figuring out how I could watch Star Wars in a continuous loop.

Opinions on the matter vary, and are conditioned on how old the kid is, and what they are allowed to do, and whether or not they are reaching for their parent’s tablet or their own. Studies on the matter are nascent and inconclusive. If you’re keeping score, this is also the first time people of my generation are revealing themselves to be old-fashioned kooks. We are inherently biased, for lots of reasons, against any child having something we didn’t when we were that age. There are numerous legitimate concerns in regards to kids and tablets, but part of why it feels wrong is nothing but in-my-day, uphill-in-the-snow-both-ways, cane waving.

I can’t and won’t expound too much on child psychology, but this phenomenon of toddlers who are unbefuddled by tablets can lend some insight into why the devices are so popular. To wit, they’re so easy, even a baby can use them. That was once a figure of speech. With tablets it’s actually true. Exploring what that really means breaks down to two things: 1) the interface is friendly to illiterate people and 2) the interface is highly intuitive.

When I Googled “why do we like touchscreens?” (admittedly a bad query) I got these results; essentially that is just a list of articles written by cranky 30-year olds waving their canes at touchscreens. They are wrong. All of them.

Much is being made of how mobile devices are killing the PC market. And I say that it’s true, but not so much in the sense that most hype dealers want to spin it. Yes, Intel’s sales are down. Yes, Internet traffic is increasingly mobile device driven. But saying that the PC is dead is like some fashionista declaring the end of pencil skirts or this guy declaring that this bar is over. It’s a hip, wild thing to say, but it belies a certain emphasis on the popular.

I say it’s true enough that PCs are going to die as a casual computing platform. The influx of new PC users that were encouraged by the convenience of the Internet, (but only the convenience of the Internet), don’t need a whole danged computer. Complex work still warrants a full computer, and always will. At the very least, the infrastructure and software that makes your mobile experience so convenient, the graphic design that makes it so colorful, the video editing that makes the content you love possible, these all need powerful machines with complex input modes. The PC isn’t going to die, the popular kids are just done inviting it to parties. From the popular kids’ point of view, this is the same thing as being dead, but what do they know?

In a way, things are returning to how they used to be. The tactile world of the tablet makes your experience less like a computer and more like fussing with paper and maps and real physical objects. Using a tablet is in some ways like doing things you used to do before tablets. The PC, meanwhile, is returning to the loving embrace of the dedicated computer nerd, and I’m sure that, quietly, the computer nerds wouldn’t have it any other way.

Anti-Buzz Tablet Computers

Anti-Buzz: The End of Large Software

Andrew has been writing Anti Buzz for 4 years resulting in almost 200 articles. For the next several weeks we will revisit some of these just in case you missed it.


newface-620x461I have spent many of my recent articles trying to make some sense of the smartphone/tablet boom, but what I haven’t done is really dig into what I think it means for you, a practicing dentist.

I think it is fair to categorize this move to mobile devices as a renaissance – that is to say a rebirth of the computing revolution.

You went paperless? Good! You have a website? Good! Computers in every office and treatment room? Good!

Now tear it all out, we’re starting over.

That’s what it means to you. Not very anti-buzz of me, but that’s what I think you are looking at. You might be able to make like the publishing industry and forestall the disruption – your industry has the means of sandbagging – but the day is coming where you will put a tablet in the hand of every employee and hold the expectation that your patients will have already checked in on their phone before entering your office, (perhaps forwarding you a note of their location when they do so you don’t jump the gun). You will visualize their circumstance with photos and x-rays and charts, passed to them on a tablet which they will flip through in the exam chair, paging the items with their fingers, (not unlike paging through the old records of yore, ironically). When finished they will finger in their next appointment on a calendar sync’d to respect both your time and theirs. The bill will be e-mailed, and they will pay on the spot, right there in the treatment room, either swiping their card down the side of the tablet, or just routing through PayPal with the press of a few buttons.

This will happen. When? That’s trickier.

Why It Will Happen

If you think the above narrative is dubious, I would guess it would be for one of two reasons.

You can’t run a dental practice on a tablet – Which is literally true, in the same way that you can’t run a dental practice on a keyboard. The keyboard alone certainly doesn’t have the storage capacity for your records and neither does a tablet, but they are both just interfaces. Your records are still on a big computer somewhere, (possibly not in your office). I am also not suggesting that your practice would become computer-free, just computer-light.

Patients won’t want to be so involved – which may well be true of some of them. You will still have a front desk, where your patients will be free to pretend that it’s still 1980 if they want. But there is a bigger picture you are missing if you think this level of customer interaction isn’t on the horizon. An increasingly large portion of commerce is being driven not just through the Internet, but through mobile devices specifically. The triumph of small software means there is an app for everything. People enter a business and compare prices, real-time, with other stores near them, (there is an app for it). We are already beyond the comfort threshold – that is, customers are already comfortable with this. We are looking at expectation. Customers will soon /expect/ that they can enhance their experience through their mobile device at all times.

apple-ipadThe difference between a practice that allows patients to take some control on the small screen and the practice that keeps all knowledge guarded on “professionals only” machines is the difference between an inviting, personable practice, and a stereotypically sterile one. You used to keep your appointment book behind the front desk because only your receptionists were trained to keep it straight. Then you kept it squirreled away on the treatment room computers because you couldn’t expect your patients to know how to use your software. If everything is handled on a light, intuitive touch interface, there really is no reason not to let the patient pencil themselves in. A patient who physically sets their own appointment is going to feel more invested in returning for treatment. And while I understand that many offices are already rife with tools to present information to patients, handling a patient the means to explore their own records and information offers a touch of humanity, makes them feel like they have more control, and will ultimately make them feel more comfortable with you and the services you offer. You want these changes to happen.

Apart from infrastructure, the real change is that practice management software is currently designed for use by you and your staff, and it will need to change to be used by you, your staff and your patients.

Why It Won’t Happen

As said, as an industry, that you are capable of sandbagging. The sort of mobile revolution I’m talking about is going on right now in the retail industry, but there we are mostly talking about large national chains. It makes sense that these corporations would either hire engineers to build a solution, or contract with a large development company to build one for them. You are a small business, and aren’t really in the game of revolutionizing practice management tools. You indirectly contract engineers by purchasing practice management software, but ultimately you are just a customer, not a true partner. It is possible that the changes I’m discussing will come naturally. Perhaps the types of packages I’m describing are in development right now! But much as the stubborn among you were able to hold out against “computerizing” your office, you can again hold out against “tabletizing” it too. It would be a mistake, but it would not be an immediately dire one. It’s really a matter of how forward thinking you are as a group, because the types of solutions you are offered will be reflective of that.

If the developers of practice management software do not move away from the increasingly archaic large software suite, they will be prone to be disrupted by the first company to take the risk. Right now the industry enjoys being composed almost entirely of small businesses. There are no ubiquitous dental chains. But if, as a group, you stall out on modernizing again, you could risk being supplanted by anyone daring enough to try putting the sleek “mobile” dental experience in offices around the country.

Hardware Tablet Computers

Surface Pro 3

I really like my iPad but can not use it for real work. That is writing, presentations or dental charts. Sooo I am intrigued by the surface. If it works the way it is advertised it may be a great solution for dentistry. It would be very cool if the new improved pen feature allowed us to chart and sign.

Tablet Computers

What Microsoft gets wrong about the tablet-laptop redundancy

From Ars Technica:

…a pretty surprising statistic: 96 percent of iPad owners also own a laptop…

researchers have been tracking it, alongside other tablets, to figure out what we actually use them for and where. In short, we use tablets almost everywhere we don’t use laptops, or where we would use laptops in an absolute pinch but would prefer not to: bedrooms, living rooms, bathrooms, and kitchens.

via What Microsoft gets wrong about the tablet-laptop redundancy | Ars Technica.

My take is that tablets are for entertainment and laptops (or desktops) are for creation. That is productive work. Most people will read a novel on a tablet but very few people would write a novel on a tablet.

Hardware Mobile Tablet Computers

Microsoft Launches a Virtual Assistant to Take on Apple’s Siri

From MIT:

Cortana appears to combine design features of Apple and Google’s own virtual assistants. Cortana is similar to Siri in that you are encouraged to address the app as if it really had a personality of its own

via Microsoft Launches a Virtual Assistant to Take on Apple’s Siri | MIT Technology Review.

I am looking for an app to let me speak in my exam findings to the digital chart.

Dentalcompare Hardware Office Design Tablet Computers

Keeping Your Machines Germ Free

This week at Dentalcompare:

The worst offenders in the techno germ category are handheld devices. We take them everywhere, are constantly touching them, pass them around to others, sneeze on them, sweat on them, and then we hold them against our face and mouth. Numerous studies have confirmed our handhelds are a prime source of nasty germs and disease transmission.

via Emmott On Technology: Keeping Your Machines Germ Free |

Just for Fun Tablet Computers

iPad Air Trauma Test

This is mostly a cool ultra slo mo video of an iPad getting shot up. But the results of the dirt drop are surprising.