by Bill French on 09/07/10 at 5:00 am
When I first watched the iPad announcement in January 2010, I decided to take a few notes about how iPad might affect my use of iPhone when I eventually got an iPad. I had a hunch it would change many things but I wanted to discretely track specific business work activities that I was doing on my iPhone and compare them to a future with iPad that was largely speculative at the time.
To achieve this, I created a simple spreadsheet in Documents To Go for iPhone which allowed me to track my typical activities in terms of aggregate time as a slice of all business activities for a day or week. My tracking wasn’t completely scientific, but by taking measurement notes from time to time over many months as I waited for iPad to arrive, I was able to develop some general percentages of time spent on various business activities such as reading documents, writing email, or connecting to my Windows desktop to perform support tasks for my company MyST Technology Partners.
Of course, this data represents my personal experiences only. Your mileage may vary depending on your workday, your role in your company, and the apps you have installed. But the insight to be gained from this data is likely to be similar for many business adopters of iPad who also use iPhone.
One of the big issues that emerged following the announcement of iPad this year questioned the sanity for iPad if you already had an iPhone. At first glance, iPad looks like an oversized iPhone. This narrow perspective all but misses
the point. Two previous articles (one at iPadCTO and one at iPhoneCTO) speak to this inaccurate perception of reality. Since iPad’s release, this is no longer a concern for buyers of both products. However, it’s still a loaded question for those that have never handled an iPad regardless of how much they love their iPhone and depend on it for business tasks. The data developed from my own experiences is likely to help business people understand how their life may change before and after they get an iPad. The chart below reveals the general business activities and percentage of time spent doing them in iPhone prior to getting an iPad.
Once I started using my iPad, here’s what happened to my iPhone use for business activities. Note that while some activities increased in percentage of use, I stopped using iPhone altogether for some activities and my actual time using iPhone naturally decreased.
The most surprising change was an overall percentage decrease in remote desktop activities. With iPhone, 13% of my time was spent connecting to my remote desktops (Mac and Windows), whereas, with iPad in hand, my iPhone use dropped only a few percentage points (8% and 7%
respectively) sharing the remote tasks almost equally between iPhone and iPad. While the net amount of time spent in remote sessions has increased as a result of the iPad, more than half of the remoting time is still spent in iPhone. This could be influenced by PocketCloud, a recent addition to my remote desktop toolkit which works on both iPhone and iPad, but the more likely influencing variable is the availability of pervasive connectivity and convenience of iPhone as well as the likelihood that remote activities typically involve a degree of urgency.
And the next chart shows how many of my business activities have shifted toward iPad and reshaped what
I actually use this device for.
It’s important to note some additional observations about time used, mobile versus office use, and other data points concerning the impact of iPad use on iPhone.
- My data does not factor in the amount of time my use of either device increased or decreased, although I did track this data and generally speaking, the aggregate time spent on my iPhone for business tasks is lower since getting the iPad.
- This analysis is independent of the influence iPad has had on my notebook use, in terms of both time and activities distribution. I plan to produce a similar analysis that stems from this article (iPad v Laptop: Is it time to leave the laptop behind?).
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