Data entry using a portable device can, at times, present challenges. The following is provided to support field users based on actual field use:
Data entry at an open area road construction site presented no difficulties during cloudy overcast conditions. However, it was necessary to shade the tablet screen when using outdoors during full sun conditions.
When in the full sun the screen acts like a mirror, with entry fields obscured by reflections. This was overcome by moving to a shaded area, such as that created by a tree. By placing the sun behind the user and operating in the shadow created by the body, also enabled data and photographic evidence entry.
It was also noted that the screen of the ipad tablet was not as reflective, and therefore easier to use, than the small screen of the Samsung smart phone. The use of polaroid lens sunglasses was found to impair on-screen visibility in full sun conditions. The use of clear safety glasses assisted with the ease of data entry.
The challenges presented by screen reflection created from very bright and sunny conditions can therefore be overcome with some pre-planning and minor adjustments whilst in the field.