Portable communications device
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A portable communications device is a hand-held or wearable device. For example, the walkie-talkie is a device that is hand-held when in use, and wearable when not in use. Portable telephones (mobile phones) are also carried, or worn, on a belt, or in a pocket.
Portable devices have also become usable when worn. For example, most walkie talkies come with a voice operated transmit capability so that they will work hands-free, when used with a wearable microphone. Many telephones such as the Motorola Star Tac also feature an earpiece that allows the phone to be worn and used hands-free. The Star Tac was the first wearable cellular telephone, in the sense that it was the first that could be used while being worn.
Portable computers are computers that can be hand-held, used on a lap, or worn in a pocket, belt, or the like, such as personal digital assistants (PDAs). PDAs are almost always worn (pocket or belt) when not in use, but some are also usable when worn (e.g. with eyeglass-based displays as well as electric seeing aids such as eyetap devices).
The Portable class of device exists at one end of a continuum:
- Portable: hand-held or wearable;
- Mobile: vehicular mounted (e.g. an automobile radiotelephone);
- Base station or desktop units: building-mounted.