The use of customised applications can help business make the most of media tablets, one analyst has claimed.
Richard Absalom, author of an Ovum report on tablet computers, claimed that the use of generic apps may see companies miss out on the full range of mobile working benefits.
Employees are seemingly eager to use the touch-screen devices, but they need to be given the tools required to do their jobs to the best of their ability, he suggested.
And in many cases, this may mean using specially-designed applications which are relevant to their day-to-day duties.
“Providing a range of customised applications that make use of tablet functionalities for employees in specific job roles is a good way to gain maximum value from tablets,” Mr Absalom stated.
“The growing use of in-house app stores indicates that more and more companies are going down this custom development route.”
In the new report, he said today’s tablets should not be considered as laptop replacements for the majority of information workers, but another option suitable for people on the move.
While useful where data presentation and consumption is concerned, the use of everyday productivity applications such as spreadsheets and word processors is difficult on a touch-screen device, Mr Absalom claimed.
However, he said using line-of-business tablet applications specifically designed for particular roles within an organisation can provide real value.
Ovum forecasts there will be in excess of 235 million tablets in circulation by 2016, as more professional people and consumers recognise their potential benefits.
Many people may even bring their own personal devices into the workplace and use them on company networks, as they embrace the consumerisation of IT, the firm suggested.
“The chief executive or another C-level executive gets hold of an iPad for their personal use and decides that they want to be able to use it in the office,” Mr Absalom noted.
“It is hard for the IT department to say no when it is the chief executive making the demand, so this opens up the path to further adoption throughout the organisation.