Enhancing Your iPad for Business Use
With the recent release of the third generation in iPads, "the New iPad," many people are in possession of Apple's tablet device. However, iPad users can get more out of these purchases than just gaming and movie watching. In fact, the iPad has become a great resource for managing business if handled properly. For maximum business optimization, you must understand your needs and acquire the right applications for your iPad, not just the first one that pops up in a search results list. Here are some tips to ensure your success.
Utilize its offline
While it is necessary to access your iPad's browser with a Wi-Fi connection, you are able to access certain data offline through the use of apps like Instapaper. Although not free, this tool allows users to save web pages for reading later, offline. This can include particularly lengthy emails, PDFs, website articles, blog posts, etc. Anything that you need to read but can't get to at the moment will be available to you later even if you're not able to access an Internet source.
Use cloud storage.
iPads are not made with much space capacity for data, but through the use of cloud storage, this is no longer an issue. Using sources such as Apple's own iCloud or outside sources such as Dropbox or CXCloud, you can greatly increase your iPad's memory and capacity possibilities. By using the cloud you will also be working in real-time, syncing to your other computers and/or devices, which will allow you to work virtually anywhere.
Research apps specific to your
It's definitely a good idea to take time to really search for applications that are specific to your business industry. These apps are likely to be more costly but will probably be instrumental to your iPad business usage. Picking the best, even if it's more expensive than others, will not go unrewarded. For instance, web designers and developers would benefit well from downloading apps like Gusto, a full-featured website development environment, and Sketchypad, an app used for website sketching and app interface making. Both cost money, but both would be beneficial in the web design and development field throughout one's career.
Know what type of office suite software you
Aside from any industry-specific app purchases, office suite apps are likely to be your biggest expenses when it comes to downloading software for your iPad. Understanding your particular needs will help you choose the right apps. Do you need an app for simple writing purposes or one that allows visual content to be added as well? Are you only interested in looking at spreadsheets, or will you be creating and editing them as well? These are the types of questions to answer before you make your more expensive app purchases, and don't be afraid to utilize a mixture of different suite tools.
Optimize your meetings.
Web conferencing is as easy as ever with iPads nowadays. The added feature of front and back cameras (from the iPad 2) allows a lot of possibilities. Apps like WebEx and GoToMeeting, which are both free, organize and aid your conferencing needs. Apple's own built-in app FaceTime is useful too.
Presenting information can also be a breeze. You can run your presentations from your iPad directly to a TV, projector, or monitor, or you can use your iPad itself for a great one-on-one show. Apps such as Keynote, QuickOffice Pro HD, and OmniGraphSketcher, all paid, each offer great presentation opportunities.
Check out these popular business
Analytics HD (paid): Google Analytics's application for iPad
Dragon Dictation (free): voice transcription with the option to share messages via text, email, Facebook, and/or Twitter
Dropbox (free): file storage with offline file access
Evernote (free): a to-do list and organizer of thoughts, photos, audio notes, reminders, etc. that syncs with all other devices using it
Flipboard (free): keep up on your daily news, magazines, blogs, etc. essential to your business needs
iThoughtsHD (paid): allows visual mind-mapping with an export function
iWork Suite (paid): Apple's business suite apps that include Keynote, Pages, and Numbers; it allows you to read and export files to their respective Microsoft Office counterparts
Line2 (paid): a mobile call center/full-featured phone line with caller ID support, multiple call possibilities, visual voicemail, call waiting, 20 person conference calls, and more
LogMeIn Ignition (paid): gives access to your home or office computer (PC or Mac) from your iPad
Twitter for iPad (free): a smooth design and flow for managing your Twitter account
What have you discovered that has proved useful to handling your business via iPad? Are you using other applications not mentioned here?