May 28, 2010 1:18 AM
The iPad is Apple’s latest gadget, intended to revolutionize the future of mobile computing. Released in the United States on April 3, the iPad allows users to browse the Internet, answer email, display an extensive photo collection, watch videos, listen to music, read e-books, use global positioning software to get directions, take notes, keep track of a calendar and contacts, and use iWork productivity applications such as Keynote, Pages, and Numbers. It retails for $599. And now other manufacturers are coming up with iPad knock-offs that do many of the same things that an iPad will do. But -- is the iPad (or some other iPad-inspired computer tablet) really a revolutionary development in computing, and does your small business need one?
The answer is yes only if the iPad allows you to accomplish more in less time: the essence of productivity. The iPad offers certain advantages and disadvantages to small business owners, depending on your particular business and your particular needs. Self storage owners who own just one facility are not likely to need an iPad. But operators who travel back and forth between several facilities, and small businesspeople who travel frequently and who use self storage units to hold inventory and archives, may find an iPad to be a useful tool that enables them to be more productive while traveling. [More]