Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
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HOW TO PURCHASE A PERSONAL MOBILE DEVICE
HOW TO PURCHASE A
PERSONAL MOBILE DEVICE
Determine whether you need wireless access
to the Internet and e-mail or mobile
telephone capabilities with your device.
Smart phones often give you access to e-mail and other data
and Internet services. Some PDAs, smart phones, ultra
personal computers, and handheld game consoles include
wireless networking capability to allow you to connect to the
Internet wirelessly. These wireless features and services allow
users to access real-time information from anywhere to help
make decisions while on the go. Most portable media players
do not include the capability to access Internet services.
Whether you choose a PDA, smart phone, ultra personal
computer, or portable media player, handheld navigation
device, or handheld game console depends on where, when,
and how you will use the device. If you need to stay
organized and in touch when on the go, then a smart phone or
ultra personal computer may be the right choice. Choose a
handheld navigation device if you often need directions or
information about your surroundings. If you plan to relax
and play games, then a handheld game console may be right
for you. Busy professionals who are on the move often carry
more than one personal mobile device.
This section lists guidelines you should consider when
purchasing a PDA, smart phone, ultra personal computer,
portable media player, handheld navigation device, or
handheld game console. You also should visit the Web sites
listed in Figure 58 on the next page to gather more
information about the type of personal mobile device that best suits
your computing needs.
For wireless devices, determine how and
where you will use the service.
When purchasing a wireless device, you must subscribe to a
wireless service. Determine if the wireless network (carrier)
you choose has service in the area where you plan to use the
device. Some networks have high-speed data networks only
in certain areas, such as large cities or business districts. Also,
a few carriers allow you to use your device in other countries.
When purchasing a smart phone, determine if you plan to
use the device more as a phone, PDA, or wireless data device.
Some smart phones, such as those based on the Pocket PC
Phone edition or the Palm OS, are geared more for use as a
PDA and have a PDA form factor. Other smart phones, such
as those based on Microsoft Smartphone or Symbian
operating systems, mainly are phone devices that include robust
PDA functionality. Research in Motion Blackberry-based
smart phones include robust data features that are oriented to
accessing e-mail and wireless data services.
Determine the programs you plan
to run on your device.
All PDAs and most smart phones can handle basic
organizer-type software such as a calendar, address book, and
notepad. Portable media players and handheld navigation
devices usually have the fewest programs available to run
on them. Ultra personal computers usually have the most
number of programs available because the devices can run
almost any personal computer software. The availability of
other software depends on the operating system you
choose. The depth and breadth of software for the Palm OS
is significant, with more than 20,000 basic programs and
more than 600 wireless programs. Devices that run
Windows-based operating systems, such as Windows
Mobile may have fewer programs available, but the
operating system and application software are similar to those
with which you are familiar, such as Word and Excel. When
choosing a handheld game console, consider whether your
favorite games are available for the device. Consider if you
want extras on the device, such as the capability of playing
media files.
Make sure your device has enough memory
and storage.
Memory (RAM) is not a major issue with low-end devices
with monochrome displays and basic organizer functions.
Memory is a major issue, however, for high-end devices that
have color displays and wireless features. Without enough
memory, the performance level of your device will drop
dramatically. If you plan to purchase a high-end device running
the Palm OS operating system, the device should have at
least 32 MB of RAM. If you plan to purchase a high-end
device running the Windows Mobile operating system, the
PDA should have at least 64 MB of RAM. An ultra personal
computer can have 512 MB of RAM or more while a
handheld navigation device may have over 2 GB of flash memory.
An ultra personal computer can have 512 MB of RAM or
more while a handheld navigation device may have over
2 GB of flash memory.
Many personal mobile devices include a hard disk for
storage. Portable media players, ultra personal computers, and
some smart phones include hard disks to store media and
other data. Consider how much media and other data you
need to store on your device. The hard disk size may range
from 4 GB to more than 80 GB.
Consider how much you want to pay.
The price of a personal mobile device can range
from $100 to more than $2,000, depending on its
capabilities. Some Palm OS devices are at the lower end of the cost
spectrum, and ultra personal computers often are at the
higher end. A PDA will be less expensive than a smart
phone with a similar configuration. For the latest prices,
capabilities, and accessories, visit the Web sites listed in
Figure 58.
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