Last weekend, I presented at the Type-A Parent Conference. I will follow that up with an appearance at the Blogalicious Conference this coming weekend. I figured I would update my blog, take some notes, do a ton of tweeting… the normal blogging/social media conference stuff. For the longest time, I couldn’t imagine attending one of these events without my laptop. It’s not the biggest laptop, but conference days are pretty long, and I sometimes dread lugging it around all day.
Even still, the possibility that I may need it to do something labor-intensive forced me to sling it over my shoulder. For these latest events, I made the decision to only carry my tablet. As techie as I am, my tablet is primarily used to triage some emails, browse the web, watch some YouTube videos, and send some tweets and Facebook updates. My kids seem to use my tablet more than I do.
All that to say, my tablet productivity is pretty low. So I weighed the pros and cons of both, and came up with 7 reasons why I should leave my laptop at home and only take my tablet, and why you should too.
7 Reasons To Leave Your Laptop At Home 1 of 8
7 reasons why I should leave my laptop at home and only take my tablet, and why you should too.
Photo Credit: ASUS
Tablet Portability 2 of 8My laptop is pretty average: Not too big and not too small. Even though it's pretty portable, after carrying it around all day for multiple days, I can definitely feel it weighing down my shoulder and cramping my style. My tablet on the other hand, is much smaller and lighter and is less of a chore to carry around for the duration of the day(s).
Tablet Startup Time 3 of 8Waiting on my laptop to boot up seems like it takes forever. On the flip-side, I don't want to leave it on, and run the risk of draining my battery quicker. So I normally find myself stuck between keeping it on and having easy access but running out the battery life quicker, or shutting down my computer to to conserve power, but have to wait forever for it to turn on every time I want to use it.The boot time on my tablet is much faster than my laptop. I can also leave my tablet on and have instant access without losing too much battery life.
Tablet Battery Life 4 of 8
Laptop batteries are getting better. If I deploy some special battery-saving tactics, I can get through a good portion of the day without desperately searching for a wall outlet to send that last document. Most tablets have 2x the battery life of a laptop, and last much longer. As a result, I can get through an entire day using my tablet without strategizing to squeeze as much battery life as possible.
Tablet Flexibility 5 of 8
When I have to take a flight, I normally take my tablet and my laptop. I typically use my tablet to watch movies or read a book flip through a magazine while in the air. I use my laptop when I feel like I need to get some "work" done (more on that later). In all actuality, my tablet is flexible enough to handle both the entertainment and productivity aspects during my trip.
Photo Credit: bplanet via freedigitalphotos.net
Tablet Accessories 6 of 8
Speaking of apps and accessories, you can customize a tablet to suit your needs perfectly with the right apps. Some of my go-to tablet apps include Evernote to keep track of all my notes, tasks, and projects; Google Drive to create, sync, and share documents. On the accessories side, Logitech makes some seriously good Bluetooth keyboard cases & covers to keep your tablet protected, as well as crank out some lengthy documents.
Getting into the Tablet Mindset 7 of 8
Most of the time, I think and even plan to get a ton of work done on my laptop when I travel. In reality, I don't do as nearly as much "work" when I am on the go. When I say work, I mean using software or online services that require large amounts of computer power or memory. Most of the time, I am checking up on emails, or maybe just drafting a blog post to get my ideas out of my head and on [digital] paper.
So if I tweak my travel mindset a little and realize that I can accomplish most of my tasks on a tablet, I may just enjoy my time "out of the office" more and not stress out as much. Plus, if I do need to accomplish a laptop-related task, I can always access my laptop with my tablet and a remote desktop app to get it done.
Future Proof 8 of 8
If I were to put on my Nostradamus hat, I would say smartphones and tablets will eventually replace computers. You can see the change starting to happen. Laptops are hitting the gym, and getting a slimmer "Ultrabook" profile. They are also starting to come with touchscreens and can be converted into tablets a number of ways.
The combination of tablets getting more powerful, the shift in how we use computers via touch interaction, and access to all our personal and professional information in the cloud, will at some point make a traditional laptop a tough sell. Might as well get accustomed early, and use your tablet more!
What is the one thing that’s holding you back from leaving your laptop at home and only carrying your tablet when you travel?