Apple’s newest tablet, at 7.9 inches, is much more portable than the current iPad family, but will it have an impact on tablet adoption in healthcare?
The iPad Mini has the same resolution as the iPad 2, meaning that all the apps will be ready to go on the Mini, without any adjustments required of developers. Any medical apps you were using on the iPad will have an identical user interface on the Mini. This eliminates the barrier of entry for developers who would otherwise have to create new versions of their apps, and the period of time it would take to iron out any bugs or glitches.
The 16GB iPad Mini + wi-fi starts at $329, which is a lower price point than the current ipad, and makes it more accessible for hospitals and clinics to buy on an enterprise-level, as well as for physicians and medical students to purchase on their own.
As Dr. Hussain said in his review of the Android Nexus tablet, “One of the biggest conclusions of this review is the need for a smaller tablet form factor for physicians.”
“The iPad’s form factor leaves much to be desired when using the tablet in the medical setting. First, you have to get a custom white coat that fits the iPad. Once you’re finally able to fit your iPad in your white coat, you feel like someone took a brick and put it in your white coat. I have physician peers who have gone as far as weighing down the other side of their white coat so they can balance themselves.”
In a hospital or clinic, where doctors are on their feet for the majority of the day, a smaller version of the already highly useful tablet could mean a higher adoption rate. Current estimates report that 62% of doctors in 2012 use tablet devices. (Source: Manhattan Research, 2012). This number grew from a reported 35% in 2011. If the trend continues to grow as rapidly, it is possible that tablets could reach near total penetration of the health sector, and the iPad Mini can only improve those prospects.