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Monday, June 10, 2013

Laptops Versus Tablets - Which Is Best For Business


Is your organisation thinking of implementing tablets and/or SmartPhones as part of your mobile strategy? Have you recently rolled-out a tablet or, specifically, the Apple iPad to your employees? Well, it appears that you are definitely not alone. A recent survey by Context reports that 63% of tablets sold in the UK are being bought for business use. And, if we follow the path of the US, 75% of businesses will have deployed tablets during 2013.

I've worked with many organisations over the last two years, assisting in adapting and modifying business processes in line with the use of tablets. The iPad is by far the most prolific player in the business tablet game and is used across small organisations through to Global 500 Enterprises, including family run farms and wineries to schools, medical centres and busy A&E departments. Recently, United Airlines reported the introduction of the iPad as standard equipment on their flight decks. As one of the world's leading airlines with the most comprehensive global route network, pilots are provided with one-touch access to charts, maps and other crucial navigation tools.

But, a common debate is whether tablets will replace laptops within business. Well, it's unlikely as a tablet is a tablet, and a laptop is a laptop - they both do different things and one does not claim to be the same as the other. But, with most tablets no longer just a media device, but able to create and share information, remotely connect to organisational networks and allow communication across the world through virtual meetings, it's no wonder that they're becoming an important addition for innovative companies worldwide.
Clients I've worked with have shared the following reasons for why they've chosen to implement these devices:
  • It's not much fun carrying around a heavy laptop and power cable on the train, to meetings or through airports. Tablets are generally thin and lightweight, easily slipped into a bag or held in the hand.
  • What better way to deliver a sales pitch, whether to a large audience (by connecting to a monitor) or by passing the tablet around a small group?
  • With several hours of power, there's no need to go looking for a spare electric socket during meetings, and trailing cables across the floor. You can just switch it on and it's ready to use in seconds, wherever you are.
  • When you sit in a meeting and pull a slick looking tablet out of your briefcase, no one seems to mind whereas a laptop can appear intrusive and unwelcome.
  • A range of business apps (some of which are built in and ready to use) are easily distributed to employees. And, with the option of a connecting a hardware keyboard, typing and entering data is no different to doing so on a laptop.
  • The front facing camera* is great for virtual meetings, particularly as the tablet can be passed around a meeting room or handed to a client. (*not applicable to all tablets)
So, tablets are definitely set to stay, both for personal and business use - the total annual shipments of tablets worldwide are set to exceed 120 million in 2015 (ABI Research). The impact of this on the business world is that over a third of all companies are planning to stop providing mobile devices to workers by 2016, instead requiring their workers to bring in their own devices (known as BYOD - bring your own device). I haven't come across many organisations that ask their employees to bring in their own personal laptops! Have you?
TrainingU offer customised ipad training, total flexibility and will fit in with your requirements - delivering training at a time and place that suits you. We can train in-house at your offices, another location or your staff can simply attend one of our regular open scheduled courses. All of our training can be tailored to meet the exact requirements of your business.

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