The iPad Likes to Play, But Can She Work?
In the few days since the launch of the iPad, both naysayers and cheerleaders have had ample opportunity to either harangue or applaud Apple’s newest invention. Advocates say that the iPad’s intense, high-res display combined with its body-conscious touch screen and smooth operation takes media applications from sexy to smoking. Apple has mastered the art of making us need things we didn’t know we wanted. But can the iPad do anything for your business? There are a few possibilities.
Let’s take a look…
Like most Apple products, the iPad’s design is cause for some cooing. It has a polished aesthetic that’s typical for a device born of Apple’s lineage. The display is crisp and vibrant, the multi-touch screen bewitching. Use it in small meetings and presentations and your clients will be a bit star-struck. Go a step further and tether it to your mobile device. Change slides from your iPhone, and you’ll look like an avant-garde technology guru.
Portability + Power
The iPad does all the things that made the iPhone so popular—such as messaging, email, and acess to the internet practically anywhere at any time. In addition, it comes with a suite of iWork software that is compatible with Office documents. Users can work on full-size spreadsheets, presentations, and other documents. In many ways, the iPad may be more useful for business applications than the iPhone. For example, you can’t drill down in Salesforce on an iPhone without incurring serious peril to your retinas.
The iPad may be convenient, glamorous, and in some ways more practical than the iPhone, but it won’t replace laptops in the managed services world—at least for now. Many experts have serious reservations about its lack of security features, for example, its inability to run background apps. Additionally, it’s unclear whether the iPad will support Exchange or VPNs, and it may be troubled by the weak encryption that has been a challenge for the iPhone.
However, if the iPad reaches the astronomical level of popularity within the retail market that the iPhone achieved, businesses will start to pay attention. In turn, Apple may be compelled into beefing up its security and adding more business apps.
Your clients may not latch on to the iPad now, but be prepared when iPad 2.0 hits.
Eric Webster is VP of sales and marketing for Intronis. Find Intronis partner program information here. Guest blog entries such as this one are contributed on a monthly basis as part of The VAR Guy’s 2010 Platinum sponsorship. Read all of Eric’s guest blog entries here.