Yes, provided you're using a touch screen device
by dvoran - 11/10/12 2:52 PM
Have installed Win 8 on an HP610t all-in-one device similar to the ones we've deployed in our medical clinic's exam rooms and nursing stations and have the following productivity and usability observations:
Picture based logon is subtly turning out to be one of the biggest productivity enhancements aside from touch screens (which don't require Win8). Before Win8 logging in required stepping up the keyboard, doing the 3 fingered salute and then entering username and passwords ... or at least some type of wake-up activity and entering passwords. This would happen 30-100 times a day as our machines revert to screen saver in 5 minutes for security and confidentiality reasons. There was always this 5-10 second delay before one could resume working. With Win8 this has been dramatically reduced to a swipe and touch. Rarely does this process require more than 2-3 seconds before productive use of the application. Multiplied over the course of a day this is returning anywhere from 2-10 minutes of productivity. Doesn't sound like much but in a busy clinic that converts to being able to see one more patient or at the minimum that much less aggravation.
Metro customized to have the most used apps as tiles enables us to jump into the app as one is approaches the machine. This process enables the target application to be loading while one is maneuvering the chair or reaching out for the mouse. This is again something that's very small but over the course of the day has the effect of lowering the aggravation factor and gaining many little micro-productivity moments.
With Win7 on the same machines the touch screen was rarely used but with Apps now being written for Win8 (we use UpToDate a lot in our clinic) now we're finding ourselves poking, swiping and otherwise augmenting our interaction with the computer in ways we never did before. This feels so natural since we're also heavy users of iPads and iPhones. Now we often find ourselves starting one process with a keystroke or mouse movement and reaching up to the screen with the other hand to complete or take the next step. It funny how often those of us that use iMacs and MBPros as our personal machines poke at the screen only to be puzzled why it isn't working.
Am not sure whether this is part of Win8 or not but games like Break The Ball that leverage the built in web cam to let you interact in a MS Kinnect way have huge potential in medicine; guiding a patient through physical therapy maneuvers or increasing exercise monitoring for example.
So far we've been pleased and now can't wait for our organization to adopt Win8 across the enterprise ... oh wait! They're just now halfway through the migration from XP to Win7. Sigh!