When choosing a tablet for work, you should first determine what you plan to do with it. This will determine the most appropriate specification.
- How to choose a tablet for work: what to look for
- The main criteria for choosing a tablet
- Screen size and resolution
- The presence of a slot for SIM-cards, support for mobile Internet
- Overall performance
- RAM size
- Internal storage capacity
- Battery capacity
- operating system
- Choosing a tablet for working in a taxi
- Choosing a tablet for working with documents
- Top Tablet Makers
How to choose a tablet for work: what to look for
The most important criteria to consider when choosing a tablet for work are:
Screen size and resolution;
The presence of a slot for SIM-cards, support for mobile Internet;
Internal storage volume;
The manufacturer of the device is also important.
The main criteria for choosing a tablet
Screen size and resolution
The diagonal of the screen and its resolution directly determine the practical qualities of the tablet. However, it is worth choosing the appropriate parameters based on the planned scope of the device.
Small screens (6-8 inches) are well suited for 'static' work. For example, they can be used in a taxi as a navigator and a device on which the taxi services client will run; or in video surveillance systems as a remote display; as well as in other similar areas.
Large diagonal screens are suitable for 'active' work. They can be used to view and edit documents; launching special applications-catalogs (for merchandisers and sales representatives); connections to databases; remote monitoring of various digital systems, etc.
The next parameter is the screen resolution. In most cases, it doesn't really matter. But not when it comes to choosing a tablet for designers, mobile photographers, operators, artists, architects and other graphics professionals. For such purposes, high-resolution screens are especially important – 2K, QHD (namely QHD, not qHD), as well as 4K. Retina displays used in tablets Apple iPad will also work.
The presence of a slot for SIM-cards, support for mobile Internet
Since a tablet is a mobile device, its very purpose implies use outside the home or office. Therefore, for constant access to the Internet, it is required that it be equipped with a SIM card slot and support for connecting to 3G and 4G mobile networks.
The maximum data transfer rate depends on the supported mobile standard. In particular:
3G – fast enough mobile Internet, which is enough for viewing e-mail, accessing instant messengers, opening remote control according to SSH standards and the like, etc .;
4G is a very fast mobile Internet, which is enough for video streaming, video conferencing, access via RAdmin, Teamviewer and similar protocols, as well as other purposes.
Thus, for work use, it is recommended to purchase a tablet that is equipped with a SIM card slot and support for mobile Internet according to modern standards.
The overall performance of the tablet – both in terms of performing certain resource-intensive tasks and when switching between several applications – is influenced by two parameters: processor power and the amount of RAM.
The processor is the most important functional element of a tablet. In addition, almost all Android devices are based on so-called SoCs, on which both computing cores (the same processor) and additional modules such as a graphics accelerator and a modem are located. As a consequence, the higher the overall performance of this chip, the better the tablet performs.
The most productive are chips of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 series, and the most powerful as of the fall of 2017 is Qualcomm Snapdragon 835. As a result, if you need a productive tablet, you should pay attention to these processors. The disadvantage of chips is their high price, so devices equipped with them should be purchased in case of direct need – for example, if you plan to use the device for remote control of systems or quick management of business processes.
For less demanding tasks, such as using as a navigator or a remote screen, the flagship processors from the Chinese company MediaTek from the Helio line are suitable. They are, of course, not as 'nimble' as Snapdragon chips, but at the same time they provide sufficient performance for most users.
The budget alternative for chips MediaTek is the 600 series processors Qualcomm Snapdragon. Their main drawback is not the best modem. Therefore, if you need the highest possible speed of Internet access, it is not recommended to choose such chips.
But ultra-budget tablets running on old chips MediaTek, as well as Qualcomm Snapdragon S and 400 lines, can be purchased only in case of a very limited budget. The performance of such devices will leave much to be desired – however, it will still be higher than that of devices equipped with processors from Allwinner or Rockchip.
But all this is true only for Android – tablets. Company Apple in its iPad uses its own A line, and devices with Windows run on processors Intel. Most often, such tablets have a fairly balanced hardware and software component, so you can ignore the processor.
The second parameter that determines the performance of the tablet is the amount of RAM. The higher it is, the faster the device will switch between different tasks.
The minimum required amount of RAM for 'work' tablets on Android and Windows 10 (as of autumn 2017) is 2 GB. With only that much RAM, various lags and 'slowdowns' will rarely occur. Of course, if the budget allows, it is worth buying a tablet with 3-4 GB of RAM.
For work tablets on the operating system Windows, which are planned to be used for mobile management of business processes, editing graphics or even three-dimensional design, even more RAM will be required – from 6 GB.
For tablets Apple, this parameter can also be ignored, since they have a balanced hardware and software component and are highly optimized by third-party software.
Internal storage capacity
At first glance, for work tablets, the amount of internal storage does not really matter. But this is not the case. For example, the set of maps for the Navitel navigation system takes about 2 GB on the internal storage, and a full-fledged desktop client of the office system Microsoft Office 365 – about 8 GB. In addition, the operating system and other programs are located on the same 'flash drive'.
As a result, the minimum required amount of persistent storage for tablets on operating systems Android and iOS is 16 GB. But on Windows – already 32 GB. It is desirable, of course, to take 'with a margin' – then it will be possible not to worry about installing additional software.
In addition, it will not be superfluous to give preference to models that are equipped with a slot for memory cards. Thanks to this extension, you can always connect a microSD flash drive and copy some of the user data to it.
The battery capacity of the tablet directly depends on the battery capacity. The higher it is, the longer the device will 'live' without recharging. Even despite the fact that the specific battery life directly depends on the scenarios for using the tablet: for example, in the navigator mode, it literally 'burns' the energy in the battery, but when viewing documents autonomously, it consumes current very sparingly and carefully.
For a more or less specific assessment of the battery life, a parameter such as SOT – screen-on time, or screen-on time is used. With an active display, the tablet consumes energy quite 'gluttonously'. Of course, parameters such as data transfer, synchronization, GPS system operation and much more also affect autonomy.
Nevertheless, the battery life can be estimated based on a simple relationship – '1000 mAh in the battery provides 1 hour SOT'. Therefore, a tablet with a 4000 mAh battery will be asked to charge after about 4 hours of active use, and with a 6000 mAh battery – after about 6 hours.
Since tablets are usually used outside the office and just away from the charger, it is worth choosing the models with the largest battery capacity.
Many operational parameters depend on the installed operating system. The three most widely used on the market today are Windows 10, Android and iOS.
Windows 10 is perhaps the best operating system for office workers and professionals. A familiar environment, the ability to run desktop applications (including Microsoft Office), additional functionality for system administrators – all this makes this environment ideal for tablets that are planned to be used for remote management of various business processes.
Android is a fairly universal operating system. Due to the large number of applications available in the Google Play Market, it can be used for a variety of purposes – from navigation (which is important, for example, for taxi drivers, drivers, couriers or logisticians) to developing applications in special mobile IDEs. Therefore, it is suitable for almost any workflow.
The operating system iOS is ideal for creative professionals. The presence of a huge number of graphic editors, video editors, and other tools makes it perhaps the best platform for designers, layout designers, photographers, etc. It is also suitable for working with documents, although, of course, not as good as Windows.
Choosing a tablet for working in a taxi
As is clear from the above, the following devices are suitable for working in a taxi:
The screen diagonal is 6-8 inches. Such a tablet can be mounted on the car dashboard, and it will not obscure the view through the windshield;
A SIM card slot and mobile internet are needed. Even in spite of the fact that almost all navigators – from Navitel to Yandex.Navigator – have support for offline maps. Data on the current traffic situation will be downloaded from the Internet, and the route will be corrected if necessary. In addition, a network connection is required to work with some taxi services;
CPU. Enough MediaTek Helio. If the budget allows, then the X series, if it is limited, then P;
The amount of RAM. At least 2 GB, but if the budget is very limited and there is a willingness to put up with numerous 'brakes' – you can take a device with 1-1.5 GB;
Internal storage capacity. At least 16 GB – navigators cache a lot of data;
Battery capacity. The bigger, the better;
Operating system – Android. More navigator, client applications of taxi services and other tools necessary for a taxi driver are available on it than on iOS.
But buying a tablet with Windows should be avoided.
Choosing a tablet for working with documents
The most optimal solution for working with documents will be the following configuration:
The screen diagonal is 10-11 inches. More is possible, if it does not seem inconvenient;
A SIM card slot and mobile internet are needed. For example, to quickly open incoming documents by e-mail;
CPU. For tablets on Android – better performance Qualcomm Snapdragon. For tablets on iOS and Windows – does not matter much;
The amount of RAM. At least 4 GB – only in this case, huge tables or PDF documents with a lot of images will not slow down. However, if the budget is limited, then 2 GB is possible – but you should prepare for the appearance of small (but no less annoying) 'lags';
Internal storage capacity. For Android and iOS – at least 16 GB, for Windows – at least 32 GB;
Battery capacity. Likewise, the more the better.
But the most contentious issue is the operating system.
Windows Provides virtually unlimited document management capabilities with native multi-window and desktop support. In addition, if your tablet has a full-size USB port, you can connect a keyboard, printer, scanner, mouse, or any other office equipment to it. However, the operating system interface Windows is rather poorly optimized for touch control.
Android is much better optimized for touch, but has limited document editing functionality. Even office suites don't offer enough features and conveniences. In addition, the multi-window mode was introduced only in Android 7.0 and newer.
The operating system iOS is relatively good for working with documents. But, again, the toolkit of the editors in it is rather limited, and there are fewer such applications than for Android. The multi-window mode was introduced only in iOS 10 and newer, and in iOS 11 a very interesting Drag'n'Drop function appeared, which made such tablets even more convenient to work with.
Top Tablet Makers
Among the best manufacturers of tablets on Android are:
High-quality hardware on the operating system Windows is produced by:
But tablets on iOS are produced by only one company – Apple.
In the following articles, our experts will tell you how to choose a tablet for the Internet, the secrets of choosing a tablet for your child, and a complete guide to choosing a 10-inch tablet.
Attention! This material is the subjective opinion of the authors of the project and is not a purchase guide.