There are too many different types of tablet computers across a variety of platforms floating out there in the market today – but the million dollar question here is, which of these devices really hold the potential to evolve as the workspace favorite in the long run?
While, many of us don’t really believe that tablets can pose serious existential threat to laptops (and PCs) in workspace, it’s an undeniable fact that enterprise IT has come a long way in the past few years. As a part of this change, tablets are playing an increasingly more dominant role at work – either through bring-your-own-device (BYOD) program for the staff or through direct purchases by the organization itself.
In a bid to stand out in the cut throat competitive market, tablet suppliers usually offer an array of products varying by operating system, screen size, connectivity options as well as other accessories and features. The size of the device plays a particularly important role when it comes to attracting buyers. For example, surveys conducted on online shopping trends in the U.S. have highlighted that most buyers usually tend to opt for traditional tablet sizes.
According to one study, 61 per cent of the consumers who either own or plan to own a tablet prefer slates sizing in the range of 8.9” and 10.1”. Notably, this range includes products such as the Amazon Kindle HD (8.9”), Apple’s iPad (9.7”) and Samsung’s Galaxy (10.1”). However, the fact that 39 per cent consumers do not prefer tablets belonging to this category leaves ample space for devices with other form factors to bloom.
The same study found that approximately 16 per cent consumers prefer slates between 7” and 7.9”. At 7”, Amazon’s original Kindle Fire HD is a good option for those preferring products of that size, and so is the iPad Mini that has been playing an increasingly more important role in Apple’s tablet portfolio. Meanwhile, Microsoft is also committed towards controlling a big chunk of the smaller tablet market with its Windows 8.1 and Windows RT OS powered devices.
Larger tablets have their own fan-base too. The study concluded that 11 per cent consumers preferred tablets larger than 10.1”. However, 12 per cent consumers do not know what kind of tablet they actually want. For them, it is extremely important to try out a device firsthand before purchasing it. This, no doubt, highlights the importance of offering a superior retail experience to consumers – something Apple seems to have mastered quite well over the years.ga
Apart from the size, another crucial factor that adds to the success or failure of a device is the Operating System. Traditionally, Apple has been the dominant force in this category with its iOS platform surpassing the competitors by huge margins. However, with the popularity of Android powered slates soaring high and the emergence of many new and promising Windows tablets in the recent past has made sure that Apple’s firm grip over the worldwide tablet market comes under severe pressure.
Tablets are slowly but steadily making their way into the modern workspace, and the fact that there will be around 738 million sold devices by 2017 further boosts the prospects of a more widespread BYOD behavior.
In those offices where BYOD can’t be an option on legal ground or for some other reason, a co-opt policy could be the answer. This is when companies could exercise the option of purchasing slates at par with the best consumer devices available in the market. Microsoft sees a much more lucrative future here for the company’s tablet portfolio that come blessed with the power of popular Windows applications such as Office.
Tablet suppliers will also have to take into account the fact that most companies prefer to build their unique systems for employees. The ability to build proprietary apps for intra-office usage at a much lower cost is another important factor that gives tablet computers an edge in the modern workspace. Many companies these days are using software development kits to roll out programs designed to solve the issues their employees face during day-to-day operations. Therefore, making their platforms easier and more accessible for app development could give tablet suppliers a key edge over their competitors.