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Why PCs Trump iPads For User Innovation 523

Posted by samzenpus
from the using-the-old-tools dept.
snydeq writes "InfoWorld's Bob Lewis argues that while the iPad may be opening IT's eyes to a new way to encourage end-users to innovate new solutions for their organizations, that work will better be undertaken on the PC. 'When the subject is PCs, the answer is to lock 'em down and run everything in the data center. When the subject is iPads, the answer is that there's an app for that,' Lewis writes. 'Before you decide the iPad is your platform, though, consider the factors that favor the PC. First, it's a sunk cost. Second, it's more capable. And third, your end-users are already familiar with it. Which brings us to what's particularly sad about the end-user innovation situation: Until the iPad resurrected the subject, most IT organizations have actively discouraged it. It goes beyond locking down the devices so that end-users can't install software they might find helpful in their day-to-day work or might increase efficiency in their departments.'"
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Why PCs Trump iPads For User Innovation

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  • Two things (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @11:03PM (#37125660)

    1.) iPads are not replacements for PCs.

    2.) If PC operating systems weren't so fragile then IT departments would not have had to lock them down.

    2

  • Re:Dev environment (Score:3, Interesting)

    by fatalwall (873645) on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @11:47PM (#37125936)

    its a lot simpler and cheaper to continue on the pc platform then to throw out your existing code base, migrate all of your reports and provide training to your staff who are lucky as it is when they turn any electronic device on.

    my company evaluated all of the tablet solutions and we realized to our dismay that a windows7 pro tablet allows better security control, easier document syncing, no extra cost compared to our existing system, does not require the user to have a second device just to install os updates, allows for remote support, doesnt require a user to register an account that we would then have to manage because you know they will forget the password and the device pin if your able to find a way to force the pin.

    The only thing we found that the ipad had over say the asus is battery life and about .5lbs

    Apple devices are great consumer devices. In fact I am using one right now to type this. Apple does not belong in corporate America. Nor do they really care about the market. They more then love the profit margins they have with consumers.

     

  • This is weak. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by seifried (12921) on Wednesday August 17, 2011 @11:59PM (#37125992) Homepage

    First, it's a sunk cost.

    Just because you've dumped money into it doesn't mean you should continue. Bad money after good and all that.

    Second, it's more capable.

    Define capable. Can it run more programs, and is generally better for content creation type activities as opposed to simply consuming (reading email, reading web pages, etc.), well sort of. On the other hand my iPad is so small and light, has instant on, has WiFi and 3G connectivity and the battery life is such that it lives in my bag and I just pull it out to use it quickly more than I ever did when I carried my laptop. Plus because it's light and has long battery life I'm not constantly having to leave it at home to charge or give my shoulder a break. So I'd generally agree that my laptop/PC is more capable, but I don't carry it anymore so it's a moot point.

    Third, your end-users are already familiar with it

    So? There is a reason the iPad doesn't ship with a users manual. It doesn't need one. I found it intuitive. I gave my mother my old iPad 1, she has used PC's running DOS/Windows since the late 80's and at first asked for the manual, told here there wasn't one and that she wouldn't need it, and 2 days later she agreed with me (via email, "sent from my iPad"). She has since grown to love it.

    Anecdotal sure, but this seems to be the general consensus. I think the iPad has a lot more legs int he corproate world then anyone suspects because once you get used to it, being at all mobile (even room to room) makes a PC (laptop/netbook/etc.) feel like sh*t compared to an iPad.

  • by catmistake (814204) on Thursday August 18, 2011 @12:56AM (#37126246) Journal

    The reason you don't see innovation at corps on the PC is because the IT guys first lock the living shit out of it THEN put some really shitty AV that sucks resources like Norton. What you have is a machine that is painful to use that just screams drudgery.

    Trust me, if you're talking about Windows, even when IT guys DO NOT lock the living shit out of it, you still end up with the same thing... a machine that is painful to use and barely works.

    I have to completely disagree with the premise, that IT locking down the machine is causing the issue. I believe that IT choosing an architecture that is general purpose, and then removing most of its general purpose functionality, is a part of the problem. Has anyone noticed that 90% of corp workers use their computer for only company email and browser-based Corp apps? What is wrong with the idea of ditching the general purpose boat anchor and choosing an extremely limited architecture that does everything those 90% need... making THAT the defacto standard for new employees, and then giving the general purpose machine to the other 10% that need to do heavier (real computer necessary) stuff?

    I think big IT issue in most corporations is not the lowly IT tech guys, but their management, especially the corporate architects, the directors and veeps, that have their head shoved so far up their asses they have no idea that they are allowed to and even required to innovate. Instead, they concentrate on doing the same thing today that they did yesterday, i.e. maintaining status quo, and keeping Microsoft in business. After all, if everything just worked all the time, what would be the point of even having an IT department? No, they must build "broken" into the infrastructure.

  • Re:Two things (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday August 18, 2011 @05:38AM (#37127356)

    That is not true. I wrote my own app to code on my iPad. I use it all the time. It outputs to an OpenGL canvas and lets me prototype game concepts quickly and easily, without the bulk of my laptop. I also use it to explore simulations and algorithms.

    It is also surprisingly useful for creating sketches with clients at meetings for graphics heavy projects. Even prototyping music on it is not bad.

    Tablets are fantastic for consumption, but they aren't half bad for some basic development, prototyping and idea sketching.

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