It seems like nearly every week I read about a new tablet offering of some sort—whether it’s a new version, a mini-version, or a brand new tablet. Along with the product announcements, I usually see a buzz of activity around the tech blogs proclaiming why or why not the tablet will succeed. All the comparisons of functionality and available apps remind me of how my kids and their friends would compare who got the best toys at Christmas.
When Microsoft first released its Surface tablet, there were a number of articles stating that it would fail. Some said that the market didn’t want a tablet/laptop hybrid, while others stated that the lack of native apps available for the Surface would deter consumers—after all, it’s competing with Apple and Android who have well established app stores with hundreds of thousands of options.
Arguing about the number of native apps—programs that are specifically designed for and downloaded onto a particular tablet—misses the point when it comes to considering the use of tablets for business. I’m not saying apps don’t matter—they’re great for doing simple tasks like seeing how traffic looks in Seattle (usually congested) or figuring out where to eat when I travel. But I find that when I’m working, I want access to specific documents and software applications that can do more than one specific task.
The new “Killer App”…Cloud-Based Software
This is where web-based software comes into the picture. As a cloud-based construction software developer, I realize I’m a little biased, but the accessibility offered by this kind of software gives users the freedom to work wherever they want, on any device. Software built for the cloud gives users full access to the tools they need to use, allowing them to work more efficiently, whether they’re in the office or on the jobsite. So perhaps you prefer to work on a laptop, a tablet, or even a hybrid of the two, it doesn’t really matter because you can always access your software.
Do you have a preferred tablet?