Tablets are no longer considered novelty items. Business tablets are quickly becoming the device of choice for corporate usage all around the globe. The advantages of providing small business employees with such a convenient gadget are being recognised by an increasing number of companies. The end consequence is a dramatic increase in tablet and iPad use.
Workers nowadays often use a small business tablet not only to read reports or take notes, but also to compose lengthy emails and complete reports. The problem is that tablets aren’t well suited for ergonomically complex jobs like that. However, with the correct assistance, you may avoid the strain on your body that might result in unpleasant business tablet usage.
But large and small business owners are asking “should I let my workers use a tablet for business?”.
Set your tablet budget
To judge by Apple’s online store, a high-quality tablet should cost approximately as much as a luxurious weekend vacation. The newest iPad Air, Apple’s second-most costly tablet, can be had for roughly $600. Adding more storage space and other accessories may push the price of an iPad Pro above $1,200. This might not be feasible for a small business.
There’s no denying that iPads are among of the best business tablets out there. The A12X Bionic chip used in Apple’s MacBooks of the year 2020 is also used in the iPad Air. Intense work may benefit from a tablet of such kind (like video editing). Many of us, though, can get by with little more than a $50 tablet from Amazon.
What you need it for determines how much you should spend on a tablet. You can get a perfectly decent tablet for less than the price of a new pair of shoes if you only need another screen to read the news on or to keep the kids engaged on a road trip.
What to expect at each price point
|Below $100||Lenovo Tab M8, VANKYO MatrixPad S10, VANKYO Fire HD 8 (10th Generation), Amazon Fire 7, Amazon Fire 7 Kids Edition, Amazon Kindle (2019), and Amazon Fire HD 8|
|$100-$300||Samsung Galaxy Tab A (2019), Amazon Fire HD 10 Kids Edition, and Amazon Fire HD 10 Plus (2021)|
|$300-$500||Samsung Galaxy Tab S6 Lite (2019), Apple iPad (2020), Apple iPad iPad Mini (2019), Microsoft Surface Go 2 (2020), and Apple iPad (2020).|
|$500-600||iPad Air, by Apple (2020)|
|$600-800||Galaxy Tab S7+ (Samsung), Galaxy Note 7 (Samsung), Galaxy Tab S2, Lenovo P11 Pro|
|$800-$1000||Windows Tablet PC, Microsoft Surface Pro 7|
|$1000-$2000||Devices: 12.9-inch Apple iPad Pro (2021) and 15-inch Lenovo Yoga 9i|
|$2000+||A 15-Inch Microsoft Surface Book 3|
Choose an operating system for your tablet
Buying a tablet is similar to buying a traditional computer in that the buyer must choose an operating system. You’ll have to trust your gut, just as you do with a computer. Apple, with its iPads, and Android, with its many hardware alternatives from companies like Acer, Amazon, Asus, Samsung, and others, are currently the primary competitors.
Even better, several manufacturers, like Asus, are releasing Windows 10 tablets powered by Intel’s Atom chip for around €500.
Apple’s iOS is the operating system powering the iPad Air and iPad mini tablet lines. Its two main strengths are its streamlined interface and the abundance of helpful iPad applications available for download from the App Store (almost a million iPad-only titles at the time of this writing).
We’ve included our analyses with all major operating systems.
- Apple’s iPad OS
- Fire OS (from Amazon)
You’ll discover that most of our evaluations focus on Android, which offers the best value for money.
Google’s Android OS allows you to use hardware from a wide variety of manufacturers while providing you with extensive customization options, an excellent notification system, lightning-fast web surfing, and tight interaction with other Google services like Gmail, Maps, and Hangouts.
Sharing an Android tablet with a friend or family member is as easy as it is on an iPhone or iPad, thanks to Android’s support for multiple user accounts—a feature Apple’s tablets lack (though they do offer Apple’s Family Sharing, which isn’t the same).
All Windows 10 apps now have full x86 compatibility, bringing them closer to the experience of older Windows versions. And if you purchase a Windows 10 tablet, you may use the full edition of Microsoft Office. In addition, Windows tablet versions often come with a wider variety of connection and hardware choices preinstalled than do other tablet kinds.
Define your tablet use case
Before using a tablet for work, decide what benefits of a tablet are drawing you to consider a purchase.
Ease of Use While Traveling
There are still situations in which bringing a laptop whilst travelling is preferable, but a tablet will serve the same purpose when travelling.
The tablet has the advantages of being portable, light, and powerful enough to run programs like Illustrator. You won’t be slowed down at all, whether travelling by automobile, rail, or airline.
Your job may need you to take credit cards in-person, online, or while travelling.
A tablet makes this process easy and fast. This is beneficial for both you and your clients since it reduces stress and saves time.
Using apps, you could accept payments from customers anywhere in the globe.
All of this is not to mention the fact that at the end of a busy day travelling, you can chill out watching Netflix, or even bring along your favourite comic books to read.
A lot of people were sceptical about Android tablets when they initially came out since they didn’t know whether they would really use them or not. However, now that these tools have been shown to be useful in the job, there is less of a moral dilemma to spend.
Tablets are now more accessible to consumers due to intense competition in the small business. The days of having to rely only on an iPad are over. There are many different Androids available in tablet form. Finding the one that fits your spending limits is made possible by this.
Talk on the go
You will, without a doubt, use your smartphone for many types of communication, including but not limited to phone calls and text messages. However, that is usually not sufficient.
Live chat, for instance, will likely be a standard part of every customer support representative’s toolkit.
You can do this using a computer, but it’s more convenient to do it at your desk. And if you choose to utilise a mobile device, you’ll quickly learn just how challenging it is.
A tablet computer is the optimal answer. It’s quick, the display is clear, and it should work with any programmes you have installed. This facilitates real-time communication from any location.
One such instance is making video conversations using apps like Zoom and Skype on your tablet.
There is no lack of Apps
Now is the time to advance to the next level. Apps are designed to maximise productivity, which is exactly what you need in the workplace.
Just about every mobile need can be met by a dedicated app. Numerous applications are available for a wide variety of purposes, such as drawing and 3D modelling, handling payroll from the road, and keeping track of inventories.
The greatest part is that you may have access to these applications on both your tablet and smartphone by syncing them.
Is working on a tablet healthy?
Using a tablet for work often entails more than just viewing movies and accessing the web. Tasks like responding to electronic mail and composing messages are quite similar to those performed on a computer. Just as with a laptop, having the right accessories may make a long day of tablet work much more bearable.
The right picture illustrates how bending over to get a tablet placed face down on a table is the norm. Extra stress is put on the neck and shoulders as a result of this. Only by elevating the screen can a comfortable working position be attained. Muscle tightness in the shoulders and neck is another side effect of (extended) touchscreen use, particularly when using a stylus or a mouse. Typing on a tablet also has little physical and audible input. Having a physical keyboard in front of you may help you maintain a healthy posture and get the feedback you need to be more productive.
Using a tablet has been linked to increased stress and fatigue in the neck and shoulders, according to a number of studies. To alleviate the additional strain, you may do one of three actions.
Prop up the tablet at a 45-degree angle to reduce strain on the neck and maximise the viewing area. Based on their research, Young et al. (2012) came to the conclusion that using a tablet causes more neck flexion than using a laptop or desktop computer.
You should aim for a 45-degree incline. Recent studies by Albin and McLoone suggest that this is the preferred viewing position for displays (2007). Tapping the screen requires a narrow point of contact, making a larger sweep impossible. Viewing a screen from a narrower vantage point is less comfortable. Because less reflection occurs in the neck while using a tablet at an angle, this is another way in which it improves neck posture.
If you find yourself using the tablet for a lot of typing, it’s best to utilise a separate keyboard and mouse. In a study conducted by Gwanseob Shin and Xinhui Zhu (2011), it was shown that using a touchscreen keyboard significantly increased the reported levels of pain in the user’s shoulder, neck, and fingers. They also found that using a tablet without a separate keyboard or mouse causes an increase in muscular strain in the shoulder and neck.
Does performance suffer when working on a tablet?
In a nutshell, the tablet is perfect for reading and accessing the web on the move. However, the convenient gadget is less ideal for inputting several or lengthier messages. To put it simply, typing on a tablet is substantially slower than on a traditional keyboard (Chaparro 2010). Because the participants in Chaparro’s research had little to no prior tablet typing experience, it is possible that they may have improved their speed with practise. However, it is not expected that you will be able to type quicker on a tablet than on a regular keyboard. For the simple reason that it’s crucial to have both visual and aural input when typing. A tablet doesn’t provide you any feedback while you write. More errors are made while typing if no feedback is given (Feuerstein, 1997; Yoshitake, 1995).
What tablet users should also take into mind is that working with a tablet is not suited for apps or files that demand a big screen. Take, as an example, very long Excel spreadsheets.
If your company consists of no more than nine workers, you may be able to run the show with only a tablet and few apps. Office 365, Salesforce.com, and Xero accounting are just a few examples of the cloud services that are revolutionising the workplace by improving efficiency, facilitating customer relationship management–driven sales, and streamlining finances.
Tablets may greatly improve corporate output, not just because they make workers feel appreciated but also because they streamline routine tasks and reduce anxiety.
Tablets enable a more mobile workforce. They make it possible for employees to easily travel from one location to another inside an office in order to give presentations, meet with customers, or do other tasks. Tablets make it easy to check email, surf the web, and stay in contact with customers while on the road. They may hand in work on schedule from anywhere in the world.
Those who already have an Android-powered tablet like the Samsung Galaxy or Amazon Fire may convert it into a laptop computer by purchasing a wired or wireless mouse and keyboard. There is a wide range of alternatives available to you when it comes to these add-ons; however, they vastly differ in terms of battery life for wireless devices, comfort, design, cost, and quality.
Theoretically, yes, a tablet running Windows could run the same software as a laptop, but in practise, it would probably be far slower. However, there are devices that deviate from this norm, such as the Microsoft Surface Pro, a tablet that can be used as a main laptop with the same software used in a typical office setting.
By far, the most widely used OS on mobile devices is Google’s Android. It’s not uncommon for tablets to have built-in mobile printing capabilities. Android can automatically identify printers that support wireless direct printing, allowing you to transmit documents to any printer on the same wireless network as your smartphone.
Microsoft presently has applications for iOS and Android called “Office Mobile for Office 365 subscribers” that can be downloaded from the App Store and Google Play, respectively. Microsoft’s subscription service for its Office suite is called “Office 365.”
The newest versions of Office for Windows and Mac desktop computers may be downloaded for a yearly fee of $100. You may use Office 356 applications on your iOS and Android devices, and you gain more space in OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive). You may use them to create and modify documents stored in your OneDrive account.
These applications need a paid membership in order to be used. You cannot purchase the applications once and use them indefinitely. They aren’t even close to being compatible with Microsoft Office. These applications are simplified versions of real commercial solutions, not the latter.
An Android tablet that can only connect through WiFi will not have a phone number. Because of the way the accounts are set up with the cellular service provider, Android tablets that connect through 4G or 3G have an associated number.
Having a separate phone number for a tablet is necessary for calculating the cost of each device. With the number set up, your tablet’s data use may be tracked and billed more efficiently by your service provider.
Can you connect a second screen to a tablet when working?
Yes! This is made even easier if your tablet has a USB port, but can also be done over WiFi. We have a full guide on connecting your tablet as a monitor.
The tablet computer is designed for quick entertainment purposes including reading, viewing movies, and accessing the web. The tablet’s rising popularity in the consumer market has translated to increased adoption in the workplace. Yet, laws and regulations pertaining to computer work and screen time mean that a tablet without tools does not qualify as a computer workstation.
A tablet holder is all that’s required if you simply use your tablet for quick reads and little mouse and keyboard work. The minimum setup for healthy and comfortable tablet work over extended periods of time should include a tablet holder, a keyboard dock, and an ergonomic mouse. You won’t need to lug along a bulky laptop to get some productive exercise in while travelling or waiting for a meeting to start.
Longer than two hours of continuous usage per day is not advised.