following my last day at disqus, i turned in my macbook air and began a three week trek of mobile-only computing. between my phone (samsung galaxy s3, rooted with cyanogenmod) and ipad (v2, ios 6), i handled all of my computing needs. it wasn’t always efficient. it wasn’t always perfect. but between the two, they got the job done.
the key learning for me, was that it would be hard to have had only android or only ios devices. across a variety of needs, the two compliment each other quite well, but i’m not sure i’d recommend a mobile-only household. having just started my new job, it was a pleasure to move into my new mac and become reacquainted with the ease and speed with which computers, keyboards, and trackpads work.
i used to have a “home” laptop, but rarely touched it. so i donated it to the global press institute (if you have decent tech lying around -- laptops, cameras, etc -- send them their way). so i was already gradually using mobile more and more. across a typical day, the phone gets a ton of use (waking up, commuting, during work, during lunch, during pretty much anything)... i know, i know. i’m working on it.
now i’ve started to use a tablet for almost all of my consumption... working through morning emails. reading books. watching tv. playing candy crush. only when i’m doing serious work (personal or business) does the laptop come out.
so during my three week vagabond status, with no job to worry about and only getting ourselves across the country, i looked forward to this experiment. as we were moving during this time, there was a lot to take care of -- from updating addresses across dozens of accounts, to travel research -- but mobile was easily up for the task... given that i had two different operating systems.
google docs is a critical app for me, but it works so much better on android. plus, some sites / services i use (such as stocktwits50 subscription service) don’t display at all on ios. on the other hand, certain apps are just prettier on ios (plus, with my ios device being a tablet, it’s just easier / better to use for things like netflix or reading).
the only true pain points of mobile-only had to do with documents... the occasional need to print, send attachments, or download showed the area of weakness. granted some of this had to do with a particular site sucking at supporting mobile (i.e. my insurance company website not enabling me to download an updated certificate), but between the device / os / and third party -- documents has been and continues to be a spot of bother for mobile.
so while i’m back to blazing fast typing, efficient multi-tasking, and full features with a computer on my lap, mobile is still a growing piece of my computing pie. to that end, i recently purchased the new nexus 7, and it’s already my new default device at home. i never touch my phone at home, and occasionally pick up the ipad or laptop.
give one a try if you get a chance (better screen than the ipad mini and $100 cheaper :).