Posts tagged "tablet"

laptop tablet hybrid guide

Buying A Laptop-Tablet 2-in-1 Computer?

November 7th, 2017 Posted by Devices 0 thoughts on “Buying A Laptop-Tablet 2-in-1 Computer?”

Best Tablet/Laptop Hybrid for Small Business?

If you’re “of a certain age,” you might remember the classic candy commercial with a chocolate bar and a jar of peanut butter. The chocolate bar ends up stuck in the peanut butter, and the kids argue over whether the chocolate is in the peanut butter, or whether the peanut butter is on the chocolate… Either way, I think we can agree it’s a delicious combination, right?

Speaking of fantastic combinations… Recent trends in technology are making the tablet-laptop computer hybrid an increasingly common piece of equipment in many small businesses. The hybrid is powerful enough to do office-based work, but lightweight and portable enough to be carried along for conferences, to job sites, and on sales calls. Whether you use it mostly as a tablet or laptop doesn’t really matter. The big deal is that it can serve either function, depending on what you need.

You may be wondering whether your business should incorporate some laptop/tablet hybrids into its tech arsenal. Here are some tips to help you make a decision on what’s the best 2-in-1 laptop might be best for your business.

Flexible and Powerful

These hybrid tablet/laptops truly offer the best of both worlds, with no compromise involved. Find out why they’re the fastest-growing category in laptops and which models are the best fit for your business with our 2-in-1 buyers guide.

Why should I choose a 2-in-1 laptop?

The most obvious benefit of combining a laptop with a tablet is that you don’t need to buy both. Not to mention only having to bring one device to and from the office and freeing up your power sockets.

The hybrid approach has other advantages too, depending on what you need your business laptop to do.

PC performance

If you’ve dreamed of owning a tablet that’s fast enough to handle your workload, 2-in-1 laptops offer the high performance and full operating system of a laptop in slim tablet packaging. There’s nothing a standard laptop can do better than a range-topping 2-in-1.

You’ll also benefit from a true ergonomic keyboard (detachable or reversible) and have a full set of I/O ports to play with.

Tablet convenience

2-in-1 tablets will generally be a little heftier than your iPad, but they’re a lot lighter than standard laptops if you’re commuting.

If portability is a factor, there are some very light options on the market. For example, models with detachable keyboards are a sure way to lighten your load.

With a work tablet, you won’t have to keep switching your brain between touchscreen mode and traditional mode, or wish you could quickly swipe rather than having to reach for the mouse every time. Touchscreens aren’t exclusive to tablets, of course. But if you’ve used a touchscreen laptop before, you’ll know it doesn’t feel quite right. 2-in-1 laptops offer the true tablet experience.

And let’s not forget one of the greatest advantages tablets have over their laptop counterparts: most 2-in-1s have long-lasting batteries.

laptop tablet hybrid guideHow much should I spend?

Cheap 2-in-1 laptops like Chromebooks can be bought for as little as US$300. But like any tech investment, you get what you pay for.

For most business needs, you’ll more likely be looking above US$600 for a good all-rounder, or over US$1000 for premium performance and a 1TB hard drive.

If you’re considering a higher end model, you won’t be paying much more for a 2-in-1 laptop than you would for an equivalent standard laptop.

Need More Advice?

We can help you navigate the options and price points of 2-in-1 laptop/tablet computers. Get in touch and let’s get started! Email sales@thinknettech.com or Contact Us.

How Secure Is Your BYOD Policy?

August 8th, 2017 Posted by Best Practices, byod, Data, Devices, Networks, Newsletters, Phone, Security, Staff 0 thoughts on “How Secure Is Your BYOD Policy?”

It only takes one unsecured device that’s plugged into your network to lead to a network breach. That’s why it’s so important to have a bring your own device (BYOD) policy.

BYOD has its pros and cons, and organizations that already have a policy in place or are contemplating implementing one need to tick some boxes to make sure it runs as smoothly and securely as possible.

 

The Upside

BYOD has obvious advantages for staff who like the convenience and familiarity of working on their own devices. It could also lead to productivity gains, as users have an affinity for their own personal devices and how they use them.

Personal laptops, tablets and smartphones are usually more cutting edge, given that companies often don’t update their desktops for years on end. BYOD also allows staff to carry only one or two devices around with them, rather than different ones for work and personal use.

BYOD policies can save organizations money, as they don’t have to spend as much on their IT hardware while allowing workers increased mobility.

 

The Downside

Having said that, BYOD practices are not free from security concerns. More and more mobile devices provide greater scope for ways to breach a company’s IT infrastructure.

Some employees may not be as stringent as they should be about the information they bring home that could be highly sensitive or confidential. Once they take it out of the office, there’s nothing stopping them from sharing it across devices, networks, emails or even showing it to their family and friends.

Disgruntled employees about to walk out the door pose an even bigger threat. If they are leaving to work for a competitor, BYOD makes it easier for them to take intellectual property with them. Alternatively, if an employee uses a smartphone to access the company network then loses it or it’s stolen, an unauthorized person could retrieve unsecured data on the device. Staff can also sell their devices or give them away and forget to wipe company data beforehand.

 

And the Essentials

A good BYOD policy should contain two critical components: an application or software program for managing the devices connected to your organization’s networks, and a written agreement that clearly states the responsibilities of employers and staff.

For example, IT departments wishing to monitor the use of personal devices must ensure that they only monitor activities that access company information.

Software developers and device manufacturers are constantly releasing security patches and updates for threats such as viruses and malware. BYOD policies should have the necessary processes in place to automatically apply those patches across all the agreed BYOD devices.

Additionally, organizations can simplify the whole process by limiting the number or make of devices allowed in their BYOD programs and the systems they have to support. Supporting a broad range of devices could become an administrative nightmare.

The IT department should also have permission to remotely wipe the device if it’s lost, the employee leaves or if it detects a data breach, virus or any other threat to its infrastructure.

BYOD should satisfy employees and management alike, as long as there’s a clear understanding of everyone’s responsibilities. Before settling on the best BYOD policy for your organization, it’s worth getting input from HR, IT, finance, legal and anyone else who has a stake in the matter.

 

Let the Think specialists help you and your company! Please contact our sales team at sales@thinknettech.com if you would like our recommendations or a quote.

Tech Tips for the Business Professional – Keyboard Shortcuts

March 29th, 2017 Posted by Best Practices, Data, Desktop, Devices, Internet, Newsletters 0 thoughts on “Tech Tips for the Business Professional – Keyboard Shortcuts”

Time is money for most business professionals and you want to utilize every second that you have. It may not seem like a big time saver, but when you add up all the times you have to move your hand away the keyboard so you can “select”, “copy”, “paste” or any other similar functions, it starts to add up quick.

Memorize Keyboard Shortcuts

Memorizing shortcuts can be intimidating at first, but remember you don’t need to know every shortcut. You only need to learn and use the ones that are most important to you. Check out the shortcuts below to greatly improve your productivity.

Copy, Paste, and Other General Shortcuts

Press this key To do this
Ctrl + X Cut the selected item
Ctrl + C (or Ctrl + Insert) Copy the selected item
Ctrl + V (or Shift + Insert) Paste the selected item
Ctrl + Z Undo an action
Alt + Tab Switch between open apps
Alt + F4 Close the active item, or exit the active app
Ctrl + F Search for a word within a web page
F2 Rename the selected item
F3 Search for a file or folder in File Explorer
F4 Display the address bar list in File Explorer
F5 Refresh the active window
F6 Cycle through screen elements in a window or on the desktop
F10 Activate the Menu bar in the active app
Alt + F8 Show your password on the sign-in screen
Alt + Esc Cycle through items in the order in which they were opened
Ctrl + Y Redo an action
Ctrl + A Select all items in a document or window
Ctrl + D (or Delete) Delete the selected item and move it to the Recycle Bin
Ctrl + R (or F5) Refresh the active window
Ctrl + Shift + Esc Open Task Manager

The Shortcuts Don’t End There

There’s plenty more shortcuts then what we showed you above. If you want to check them out then you should follow these links:

Keyboard Shortcuts in Windows

Mac Keyboard Shortcuts

22 Best Shortcuts You’re Not Using

We hope you found these tech tips handy! Remember, it’s not just about technology solutions. It’s about partnering with our clients to drive business success.

Let the Think specialists help you and your company! Please contact our sales team at sales@thinknettech.com if you would like our recommendations or a quote.

The Surprising Secret of Happy Workers

February 22nd, 2017 Posted by Best Practices, Data, Desktop, Devices, Internet, Newsletters 0 thoughts on “The Surprising Secret of Happy Workers”

When the gurus talk about their recipes for happy workers, they seldom mention technology. Information technology is normally only discussed in terms of productivity. But it turns out employers looking for a happy (and productive) workforce ignore technology at their cost.

“Lifestyle IT” Reaches the Office

Technology is marketed as aspirational. Phones are not sold to consumers as something they can use to make calls. New computers are not marketed in terms of being able to open Microsoft Word faster than their predecessors. Consumers are persuaded to buy technology because it will enhance their lifestyle.

That idea of technology offering something more than plain functionality infiltrated the office a few years ago. Just over 40 percent of employees say having the latest and greatest technology is “very important” to them.

Use It or Lose Them

One out of four employees say the quality of the technology in the workplace would influence their decision to stay with one employer or move to another. This is even truer at the management level. Management expects the best technology. If they do not get it, they are more likely to leave.

What To Do?

IT decision makers had plenty to juggle before being told their decisions affect employee happiness and retention. There are some quick fixes.

First, Hear Them

Employees report being disgruntled when not included in IT decisions. Less than half of employees feel decision makers take their views into account when selecting technology.

A simple first step to improve employee engagement is to talk to them about the technology they need to do their jobs. You don’t know until you try whether consulting employees will cost you more. They might want something different, not something more expensive. Even if it cannot be done, you have provided a forum to explain why.

Second, Enable Them

More than half of employees are using their own devices for work or expect to do so in the future. Letting them do so could relieve some of the pressure on you. It is one reason 54 percent of companies globally are allowing BYOD.

The key is to allow it in a structured way. If you forbid it, there is a chance employees will do it anyway. That opens holes in security. Even of companies that formally allow BYOD, only 27 percent are securing the personal devices. Policies, permissions, and structure are important.

The idea of engaging employees in dialogue about a subject as involved as business technology might not seem appealing. The financial rewards, however, can be attractive. In some organizations, even the slightest uptick in retention rates can be significant.

The same is true when it comes to employee happiness and productivity. And with consumers being better educated about technology than ever, you might just learn something too.

Let the Think specialists help you and your company! Please contact our sales team at sales@thinknettech.com if you would like our recommendations or a quote.

Page Versus Screen – Is There a Balance?

February 8th, 2017 Posted by Best Practices, Data, Desktop, Devices, Internet, Newsletters 0 thoughts on “Page Versus Screen – Is There a Balance?”

For years, the debate has raged, but research hasn’t been able to prove one way or another if we retain information better when we’ve read it from a physical page – in a book, magazine or newspaper– than when we’ve read it online, with a tablet, mobile device or other screen.

And hopefully it never will, with ‘screen time’ such a big part of our lives. Computers and mobile devices are versatile and make information more accessible, so striking a balance between children’s appetite for information and their ability to digest it is crucial for primary, secondary, and even tertiary educators.

So, is the page mightier than the screen? Should we choose one over the other, or can we still find balance?

Page or Screen?

Leading researchers believe that there is a tangible relationship between text written on a physical page and the way the brain responds to and retains what is written on that page. Studies in the early 2000s indicated that students performed better in exams when they had studied the information for tests from textbooks and other printed sources. However, a 2013 survey by the UK National Literacy Trust found that over 52% of students aged 8–16 preferred reading on electronic devices, and only 32% preferred print. In fact, research indicates the next generation of students are reading well on digital devices.

In reality, banishing the screen is a near-impossible task. With students issued laptops at all ages, and doing more of their research and homework online, the screens are here to stay whether they’re helping or not.

So, the question becomes: How can educators deploy screen time for best effect?

Technology in the Classroom

Implementing simple strategies like giving students extra time to familiarize themselves with the devices they’ll be using before reading texts mean they won’t be distracted by functionality while trying to concentrate.

Screens and e-readers should be used in the same way as printed text – one device per student, not one shared among a group. This way, students will be more easily immersed in learning – without the distraction of tussling with a neighbor over ownership.

Although it can be both a blessing and a curse, connecting devices to the internet allows for more collaboration, enabling students to compare how their fellow pupils are engaging with a text. For example, sharing information online (for example, by allowing students to see which passages in a text their peers have highlighted, or by making students’ digital annotations visible to their classmates) can help the whole class to improve their understanding of a text.

This should be balanced with an emphasis on the importance of each student developing their own understanding, so teachers need to keep track of their progress by continuing to ask questions of individual students.

The future success of ‘digital natives’ using devices more frequently in their learning will rest in the same place it always has done – in the quality of the materials, in the ways educators implement them and in the way students are nurtured to use them effectively.

Let the Think specialists help you and your company! Please contact our sales team at sales@thinknettech.com if you would like our recommendations or a quote.

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