[Reproduced from GIGAOM]
The use of the iPad by mobile workers is on the rise, and that brings with it both boons and challenges for worker productivity. Here’s how you and your remote staff can stay on top of iPad usage, lest iPad usage controls you and your organization instead
1. These Are the Apps You Need; These Are the Apps You Don’t
Keep your productivity and entertainment app worlds separate on your iPad. I know it’s too much to ask that workers who are mostly using their own personal devices in the work place to use them strictly for work purposes, but everyone will be happier and better able to focus on getting work done if you keep your fun and games-related apps in a separate folder or folders. Keeping the productivity and work-related apps out in the open on the app’s home screen will give them priority seating when it comes to your attention span, and the distractions will be left just a little bit beyond finger’s reach, where they’ll be less of a temptation.
2. Carry a Keyboard
The iPad is a great consumption device, but as we’ve seen, people aren’t crazy about using it for data input. Having a Bluetooth keyboard handy makes working on the iPad exponentially better. You have a few choices when it comes to which keyboard to carry. I’m personally a fan of the ZAGGmate keyboard/hard case combo, which comes in both original iPad and iPad 2 flavors, but the official Apple Wireless Keyboard is an attractive option, too.
3. Have a Wireless Strategy
If you want to use the iPad to make mobile working easier, you’ll hit a wall pretty fast if you don’t have access to a reliable data connection. For users with a 3G-capable iPad, this means checking to make sure you have an active plan ready to go with the carrier of your choosing, and ensuring that your carrier offers service in the place you intend to use your iPad. If it doesn’t, shop around for a temporary carrier/SIM card for your working destination.
Verizon iPad owners will want to make sure that they have something other than a simple SIM switch in place for most international destinations, which largely use GSM technology to power their networks. Finding a provider that offers a pay-as-you go mobile hotspot solution might be a good workaround. Companies can help by issuing globally-compatible mobile hotspot hardware to remote employees who travel internationally.