Apple’s iPad is the most viable choice in the tablet market. The device boasts the best display, the best mobile operating system and the most viable App Store. Plus, it features the kind of touch sensitivity that other products on the market, including the HP Slate 500, won’t be able to match. And with a starting price of $499, it’s far more affordable than HP’s offering.
Apple’s iPhone started as a consumer-focused product. But in the past year, the company’s smartphone has been appealing more to enterprise customers. That has partly been due to the device’s Exchange support, but it’s also due to the administrative controls the device offers. Plus, it not only provides mobile productivity, but it doubles as a phone. That alone makes it a more budget-friendly option than the Slate 500.
RIM’s PlayBook isn’t available quite yet, but there is a good chance that the tablet will do a better job of appealing to enterprise customers than HP’s Slate. The reason for that is quite simple-BlackBerry Enterprise Server. RIM’s service is extremely important in the enterprise. Having that functionality built into its tablet could be the “killer app” corporate customers are looking for. RIM’s PlayBook is still a major question mark, but it certainly seems like a great alternative to the Slate.
5Samsung Galaxy Tab
The Samsung Galaxy Tab runs Android 2.2. Although Google has said that its Android operating system isn’t quite ready for tablets, Galaxy Tab is more mobile than the Slate 500, thanks to its 7-inch display. Plus, the tablet includes 3G connectivity, while the Slate 500 does not. If HP really wants to appeal to corporate customers, not offering 3G is not a good start.
6Motorola Droid X
The Motorola Droid X is a somewhat unique product. The device, which includes Android 2.2, is designed for consumers. But it’s a fine enterprise product for those companies that want to get more out of a team while away from the office. The Droid X includes the ability to share its 3G connection with up to five computers at the same time when WiFi isn’t available. That alone makes it a viable alternative to the HP Slate 500, which can only access the Web via WiFi and can’t share that connection with other devices.
7Motorola Droid 2
Like the Motorola Droid X, the Motorola Droid 2 allows users to connect to the device’s 3G hot spot from up to five computers. In addition, it includes a physical keyboard, which easily makes the device more viable to enterprise customers who don’t want to lose productivity with a virtual keyboard. And since it’s a smartphone that also delivers mobile productivity like a tablet, it’s not a stretch to see why the Droid 2 is the better option.
8Apple MacBook Air
Apple’s new MacBook Air is a fine alternative to tablets. The device is extremely thin and lightweight, and boasts a solid-state drive. But because it’s a notebook rather than a tablet, it’s easily a far more viable productivity tool for enterprise customers. The fact that it runs Mac OS X is an obvious issue with the MacBook Air, but it’s a small one compared with the benefits it offers.
9Any Windows Netbook
If the MacBook Air is a viable alternative to the HP Slate 500, Windows netbooks are just as worthwhile. Regardless of which company delivers the netbook, it’s a more productivity-focused device than the tablet. Plus, most netbooks run Windows 7, the same operating system that the HP Slate 500 boasts. All that fails to mention that netbooks are much cheaper than HP’s tablet.
10RIM BlackBerry Torch
RIM’s BlackBerry Torch is undoubtedly the most viable smartphone for enterprise customers. It includes RIM’s new BlackBerry OS 6, plus it offers a physical keyboard. And since the enterprise is so heavily invested in RIM products, it’s not a stretch to think that more companies would rather opt for the BlackBerry Torch than the HP Slate 500.
11A Plain, Old HP Laptop
What’s wrong with getting an HP laptop instead of the Slate 500? The device might be harder to carry around and it might be expensive, but it’s far more capable at helping users become more productive. Plus, it features the basic keyboard and track pad that enterprise customers are most comfortable with, along with a more capable version of Windows. Combine all that, and corporate customers will find much more to like in an HP laptop than the HP Slate 500.