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CIOs should be experimenting with tablets in business

12 Apr 2011

Gartner has released its findings from a report that looks at best practices for business use of iPad and other media tablets.

The company says CIOs should be experimenting with the use of media tablets in business as they offer new opportunities.

However, Gartner also says the challenge with media tablets is that they also require a new set of policies, technologies and skills that enterprises need to prepare for.

"CIOs are determined not to make the same mistakes made with smartphones; often written off early as expensive and frivolous toys, or executive status symbols — leaving room for more inventive leaders to take the competitive advantage that mobile applications would bring," said David Willis, research vice president at Gartner.

"They now recognise that they don't need to supply and manage every device that employees use at work: consumerisation is here to stay and moving very fast. It is time to explore the use of media tablets in business."

Gartner uses sales leaders as an example, saying that they are adopting media tablets as a more engaging way to share collateral and promotional materials with their teams.

Willis says that companies who are more prepared to support media tablets are those that have already recognised the flood of consumer devices coming into business and figured how to leverage rather than fight them.

"The iPad, and the larger wave of media tablets, have captured the imagination of business leaders,” he added. "Some companies have issued to business and IT leaders in the spirit of exploration, while others see areas where media tablets can bring computing into settings not practical or too cumbersome for traditional approaches.”

Gartner’s stance on tablets is that they are neither better than laptops or smartphones, but complement both and will not replace either.

You can find the full Gartner report here.