Boost your productivity with some of the latest tech trends
Laptop or tablet? IPhone or Blackberry? Email or instant messaging? With so many options on the market that are practically begging to help your small business grow, it's a wonder that you can make any decisions at all. Rather than belaboring the chore of making an informed choice, it seems like one of the best methods nowadays is to decide instead what not to buy. After all, if one of your goals is to stay ahead of the competition, you should probably just buy everything and find a use for it someday, right?
Not necessarily. Although this credo has found a home in the minds of some small business owners, it's important to know which new technologies are tried and true or just a well-marketed gimmick. In the spirit of successful ventures, take a peak at these small business tips for navigating the hype:
COOL: Tablets that become laptops that become tablets
You've seen them. They're the highly camouflaged transforming mobile devices that businesspeople carry around with them on trains, planes and cabs, flipped up for easy typing or folded down for the touch screen. An amalgamate of technological wonder, these computer tablets are perfect for individuals who are constantly on the go, but who don't want to bring two separate devices with them wherever they go. One of the key benefits of having a two-in-one option is the memory. Files that are loaded onto the laptop are still there when you convert it to a tablet, and while the cloud makes accessing information easier anyway, this extra hard drive is nice for long journeys without reliable Wi-Fi.
NOT COOL: Having a surplus of mobile devices that all do the same thing
Don't be misled by the flashing lights that tell you how empowered your small business will be with three smartphones and a tablet for each day of the week. In that vein, avoid blending technologies unless you know they work well together. For instance, if you have a set of noise-canceling headphones that only work with one smartphone when you use at least two phones every day, it's just going to end up annoying you after a while. Not to mention the bundles and bundles of chargers you'll end up having to keep track of wherever you go. Try to streamline the tech you're using by brand or by how they work together.
COOL: Cloud apps and mobile Internet
The cloud is here to stay. That point has been hammered home by the myriad success stories that have dotted the news since its inception as the latest and greatest in mobile technologies, but rather than adding to the aforementioned list of satisfied business owners, this bullet is instead dedicated to the hundreds of helpful apps that are starting to appear on the cloud. Although the cloud has a very helpful and very unique function by itself, these additions to the infrastructure help to refine how your digital architecture functions. Without all the jargon, the apps basically simplify everything - immediately. Ask your cloud vendor if they can help you find the best options if they haven't already shown you their suite of options.
NOT COOL: Overloading on data
As technologies advance on the Web, it's becoming easier for small business owners to download information. Small data, big data and everything that has yet to be labeled are the trend. Some people are predisposed to collecting, but here's the best small business tip you'll ever hear - clear out what you don't need. The benefits of mobility come crashing down when your devices are too full of useless information, so it's important to store what's necessary and know when to junk the rest