Updated: 08/16/2021 by Computer Hope
Palm PDA

Alternatively referred to as an HPC, a handheld, handheld PC, or handheld computer is a computer device that can be held in the palm of one's hand. These computers are commonly used to store appointments, phone numbers, tasks, and other data commonly needed while away from home or office. In the picture is an example of a Palm Pilot handheld computer.

What OS do handheld computers use?

The operating systems used for handheld computers differ from those used with a typical computer. Popular early handheld operating systems include Palm OS, Microsoft Windows CE, and other custom Linux-based operating systems.

Is a smartphone a handheld computer?

Yes and no. Although a smartphone is held in your hand, the term best describes early computing devices like the PDA used before the smartphone was invented. A smartphone should be referred to as a mobile device.

Are handheld computers used today?

Before the advent of the smartphone, the most popular type of handheld computer was the PDA. Today, almost all handheld computers are replaced by smartphones and tablets. However, some businesses still use handheld computers with barcode scanners and other customized handheld computing devices.

Embedded, Hardware terms, PDA, Smartphone, Tablet