The iPad is well-loved as a user-friendly, silky smooth bit of technological innovation. Some adore the thing, as a personal device and think that they might as well bring it in to work.
However, as it currently is, the iPad is problematic for IT departments across businesses. Certain issues prevent the tablet from being a strong alternative to traditional PCs.
Firstly, Apple can be an annoying company to depend upon, from an enterprise’s standpoint. The company uses whatever tactics it needs to protect its market holdings. This includes going to war against certain useful software providers, such as Adobe (no Flash on iPads), which cuts down on support and device integration.
The iPad is also not intended for enterprises, but for consumers. By gearing the product toward the typical consumer, Apple gets a lot more volume. The consumer business model does generate a lot of money for many contemporary tech developers. So, the typical buyer is going to have priority over businesses for the iPad. Companies will have to wait until Apple makes enough revenue in that market before it will turn to them.
A lot of business solutions are not even compatible with iPads because of simple application tool choices, such as Flash or ColdFusion. IT departments can’t afford to revolve around Apple; that’s not how this whole competitive market system works. To use the product, we need to come to a point in time where Apple will think about what businesses need and will adjust its products accordingly.
These application limitations make the iPad ineffective for companies. Restricted competition in applications and software (not to mention internet service providers) limits companies to Apple’s standards. The focus on consumer technology, on apps that will entertain consumers, further cuts down on enterprise functionality.
This is not to say that there will never be a time when iPads are business-friendly. There has been a recent stint of iPad business apps and in the future, these can grow into respectable options for business support. However, it isn’t yet enough to try to incorporate the alluring little PC tablet into IT systems.
[Photo courtesy of sky News.]