This one is a bit off-topic, but it’s something that every online marketer should be able to relate to.
You know how it is with us online marketers. Because we spend most of our time in the digital universe, we tend to use every gadget we can get our hands on just to make our lives a little easier.
And among the gadgets — or “toys” for most people — that we should get our hands on are tablets. Not to say that tablets are better than most laptops. Let’s admit up front that tablet computers can be limited. But in certain ways, they can also be superior to laptops.
If you don’t already have a tablet computer, the following are some reasons why every serious online marketer should consider getting one.
How tablets trump laptops
A lot of people regard tablets as mere content consumption devices. But those of us who have immersed themselves in our iPads and Android tablets have recognized that a lot of other people who think that way are utterly mistaken. To put it simply, tablets are the clear choice for people who opt to work on the go.
It’s on when you need it. In the fast-paced world of digital marketing, we need to be constantly on, especially if that includes being online. That’s one trick most laptops can’t top. Also, with an iPad or any other tablet, you can access the things you need at the tap of an icon. Once your tablet is on, you’re back in a second to where you left off.
Tablets have phenomenal battery life. When I’m on the go, nothing annoys me more than a notification that my battery has only three minutes of power left. So I have to take out my power cord and find an outlet to keep working. But with an iPad, I’ve put all that behind me. With 10 hours of battery life, I am more than happy to go anywhere I need to without having to worry about how much power is left in my device.
Size matters. In this case, the smaller the device I use for my type of work, the better. And the more portable it is without being clunky, the better for me. The iPad addresses all these concerns. By being lighter and thinner, and minimizing the necessary moving parts, it enables me to shift places and views without having to worry about wear and tear on moving parts. When I want to relocate to a different place, I can immediately pick up my iPad and head where I need to.
Easier for collaboration. You can’t pass your laptop around when you are working with other people. The best you can do with a laptop is hold it up for everyone else to see while you struggle to keep it aloft. With a tablet, you can pass it around to people for a closer look and better demonstration, and the display is always good no matter what the angle.
Darn faster. Although most tablets have at best about a third of the processing power of the average laptop, the tablet’s light operating system makes it insanely fast. On my iPad, apps load much faster and I’ve noticed very few lags — so few, they are negligible. While I have to deal with some limitations, such as the lack of multitasking capabilities, it’s an inconvenience that is compensated by the speed.
Another thing worth mentioning about tablets is that because of the type of processors they use, they don’t overheat. This makes them a safer choice over conventional laptops. And because they lack multitasking features (at least for the present), you can work free of distractions.
Weaknesses of today’s tablets
Tablet computing admittedly remains in its infancy. It still has a lot of room for growth. The hardware necessary to make tablets outperform today’s laptops isn’t here yet. That’s why, at least for now, tablets are not perfect or invincible.
But there are accessories that will help you address some of the weaknesses you may have found annoying.
No physical keyboard. While I haven’t personally experienced this as a handicap, many people who aren’t touch typists have complained about the lack of a physical keyboard as a serious handicap.
Happily, there are accessories you can get to complement your tablet computer. There are Bluetooth or magnetic keyboards you can attach to your device. The good thing is that whether it’s a Bluetooth or magnetic, many of these keyboards are so small they take up only a fraction of your working space.
Absence of local storage. Today’s tablet computers can only store so much data. Some have USB ports for external storage, but some, like the iPad, have only their built-in storage.
You can regard this shortcoming as basically a preview of what’s in store for us in the future. In a few years’ time, we won’t need physical memory for storage on our computers. Every bit of data will be stored in the cloud. With services such as iCloud, Google Drive, and SkyDrive, you have full access to all the information you stored from your electronic tablet, no matter which computer you use.
Other areas of concerns for tablets
Clearly, the tablet computers of today are not the perfect productivity tool. That is a fact that should be duly acknowledged. There are areas where laptops still reign supreme. For example. . . .
Word processing. As a blogger, I need a device with advanced document editing features such as are only available on the laptops of today. It’s something that contemporary tablets still lack, but which I hope to see in the next generation of tablet computers. I’m fairly positive this is in the works.
Running specific software. If you’re working in an industry that calls for the installation of specialized software in your computer, the tablet isn’t for you.
Video editing. For serious marketers who use video marketing as a staple of their ad campaigns, the tablet is not adequate for your needs. Video editing is heavy activity that requires special software.
While a tablet computer is indeed a great device that could soon replace your old laptop, at least for now it can only do so much. But it all depends on the type of work you need to accomplish. If it’s just simple word processing and managing your social media profiles, you can probably operate just fine with a tablet.
For now, I am using my iPad not as a replacement for my laptop, but as a welcome addition to the array of tools from which I can choose for my growing workload.