Is The Tablet an Essential Tool for Small Business Owners?

Last fall, a study found 11 per cent of American adults own a tablet computer. It also found that 77 per cent of them use their tablet every day, spending an average of about 90 minutes on them. Yet writer for Slate magazine, John Swansburg, has said he can’t see how it has improved his life, already being the owner of a Kindle, laptop and iPhone.

TechCrunch reports 106.1 million tablets are forecast to ship in 2012, partly because of strong demand for Apple’s iPad, but also because of the proliferation of other devices available. So what’s up? How could some of us hate tablets, while others seem happy to spend 90 minutes a day on them, claiming they are more convenient than a laptop?

The same study provides a clue. News readers say they now prefer their tablet devices over traditional computers, newspapers or television as a way to get both quick news headlines and to read long-form pieces.  Taylor Martin, writing for PhoneDog, is a self-avowed tablet-advocate. He argues that what separates the ‘lovers’ from the ‘haters’ is the way they use their tablets.

“For many, tablets are still novelty items – just that thing they use to browse Web sites and read news on the couch after work. For me, having a tablet is important, solely due to how I have integrated the one I currently own in my life,” he writes. He says it’s quicker to boot up than his computer and easier to use than his smartphone.

In fact, the device even serves as a focusing tool. He claims the software limitations of tablets help keep him focused on the task at hand, rather than jumping from browser tab to browser tab.

For a small business owner, focus enables you to work efficiently on projects that will make the most impact. There’s also the portability aspect of owning a tablet which makes doing business on the go easy as can be.

What about you… how has the tablet helped you in running your small business?

About the author: Sharon Oosthoek is an award-winning freelance journalist who writes about science and the environment.  Her work has appeared in New Scientist, The Globe and Mail, Canadian Geographic,, YES Magazine, Defenders magazine, Today’s Parent, Canadian Family, ON Nature and Canadian Wildlife.

FreshBooks Update: There’s some interesting chatter about the tablet for small business owners happening on our fan page. Feel free to  join in by clicking the image below:

about the author

FreshBooks is the #1 accounting software in the cloud designed to make billing painless for small businesses and their teams. Today, over 10 million small businesses use FreshBooks to effortlessly send professional looking invoices, organize expenses and track their billable time.