A Tablet Guide for Your Business

The tablet market has expanded and improved greatly, offering business users a wide range of functionality, since the original iPad was released 5 years ago. Still, when it comes to deciding what tablet to buy to help yourself or your employees become more efficient in your work, we suggest decision makers ask themselves these two questions:

  1. In what circumstances will the tablet make the user more efficient than a laptop?
  2. What applications does the user need to access in order to be productive?

These two questions can drive both the decision of whether a tablet will be worth the investment, as well as which tablet would be best for the user.

In order to help decision makers, we've put together a quick guide to the 3 basic types of tablets available on the market today--iPads, Android tablets, and Microsoft all-in-ones. Each of these options carries both advantages and disadvantages, but choosing the right one may help power your business's efficiency.


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iPad

The iPad is easily the most secure of the tablets and arguably the easiest to use. This is because iOS is a very closed operating system--it's good at preventing security threats, and Apple is serious about making sure apps meet certain quality and security standards in order to be listed in the App Store. However, some users find this to be a bit constrictive. So, here's a breakdown of the tablet's pros and cons:

Great For:

  • Use in environments where security is essential
  • Shortening the new-device learning curve for employees
  • Running secure, quality-controlled apps

Not Great For:

  1. Robust content creation
  2. Running high-powered apps (like Photoshop)
  3. Multi-tasking with apps

Android Tablets

Android tablets, like the Google Nexus 9 or Samsung Galaxy, really have come a long way since their initial releases. The main difference between these tablets and iPads is that Android is a much more open platform. This means that that while they give users access to more apps, the potential for security threats is a good bit higher, as the Google Play store is not vetted for security and quality like Apple's App Store.

Great For:

  • Users with a bit more technical sophistication
  • Multitasking with apps
  • Providing options to consumers, from apps to tablet models, sizes, and price points

Not Great For:

  • Security in the hands of inexperienced users
  • Running high-powered apps
  • Robust content creation

Surface Pro 3

The Surface Pro combines the portability and touch-screen functionality of a tablet with the computing power and keyboard of a laptop. It runs a full version of Windows 8.1 (and will run Windows 10), meaning that you can run full versions of Windows apps on the device. Of course, some may prefer the ease of using tablet operating systems, but there's no arguing that the Surface Pro comes the closest to being able to replace a laptop while maintaining a level of portability.

Great For:

  • Replacing a Windows laptop with an all-in-one device
  • Content creation
  • Running full versions of apps, including high-powered apps, like Photoshop and AutoCAD

Not Great For:

  • Security without additional measures, like antivirus
  • Users who already have laptops that don't need replacement
  • Running pared-down, tablet friendly versions of apps