The unique form factor of the tablet makes it a new kind of device for work.
While a phone is capable of delivering a short text message or email, the extra real estate on the larger screen of a tablet makes it possible to create and share videos, or display large colorful graphs. The large touchscreen that you can hold in one hand has a fundamentally different human-computer interaction than sitting down at a computer and using a mouse in one hand and the keyboard in the other.
Below are ways that you can really make the most of a tablet for the office that wouldn’t be as easy on a traditional computer.
Use a Tablet for the Office to:
Take Better Notes
There are two great ways to take notes on your tablet. The first is to use a note taking app like Evernote or OneNote. You can also use transcription software to do much of the work for you, like Dragon Dictation. Digital notes are pretty easy to “flip” through by swiping up or down. Unlike paper notes, you can search for words to find that important note later.
It’s never been easier to compare notes. Tablets sync with whatever cloud storage your organization prefers, so you can share that way, or send out an email to everyone in your team. If there’s a tough word, you can look it up later with the tablet’s dictionary.
Share Your Screen and Files
You can use WiFi to transfer files from across a room or from one office to another. Today’s file-sharing apps make it as simple as drag-and-drop to move your files. You can use desktop sharing to give an online presentation, but why stop there? Make the tablet a second screen of your white board for an in-person presentation. Let your colleagues follow along with you with their own devices while you look them in the eye for the important parts. There’s no need to print up big graphs and charts when they can hold them in their hands.
Use it as a Dedicated Distraction Device
Ask yourself this: Can you really use the same device for work and play?
When one “open new tab” is all that separates you from your favorite social media site or time-wasting game, how good is that will power going to be? It helps to actually keep a line between church and state of your playing and working. Associate sitting at a desk with work and holding your device with less structured activities.
Studies have shown it’s good to take a break every once in a while. So take that break when it’s appropriate to do so, or catch up on social media on your lunch break. But when your break is up, put the thing down and get some work done.
Use it as a Fax Machine
A tablet for the office is great for both reading and sending paperless faxes. Paperless faxes work by taking a picture with your tablet and sending it to your cloud fax service. Chances are, it’s from your VoIP service provider, but there are standalone fax services, and also fax and scanning apps that don’t require a subscription.
Your connected tablet can even send PDFs to legacy paper fax machines. And of course, the larger screen of the tablet makes it an ideal facsimile of the printed page. No need to squint at your phone when you have a tablet.
Turn it into a Business Communication Device or Telephone with VoIP
Tablets all run the same great app software found on your phone. There’s more to a tablet than just communicating via Skype. Since you can run multiple apps at the same time, you can share your notes while using a Bluetooth headset to keep your hands free. Give your caller something to look at.
But VoIP doesn’t stop with just talking. Imagine yourself as part of a large audience. Maybe you’re on a conference call, or maybe you’re watching a presentation in a large lecture hall. You want to communicate with your team, who are also listening, but you can’t talk to them directly. The solution? Your VoIP app lets you IM and start chat rooms. Have a question? Miss something the presenter said? You can silently make sure your team gets the most out of an important company-spanning meeting.
The age of BYOD is here, and is rapidly maturing from a way to let employees use their own smartphones into a new philosophy of how to use devices. Many businesses are outright giving employees tablets to make it possible to get more work done. The investment of a few hundred dollars in hardware is well worth the gains in productivity. If using your tablet lets you do one more thing every day, it’s well worth it.
Tablet Photo via ShutterstockMore in: Gadgets