When iOS4.2 finally hit the iPad, it made a lot of consumers very happy indeed. However, the greatest impact of iOS4.2 on the iPad may be in increasing the chances that it will be adopted by businesses.
The users of Apple’s iPad must have felt a bit like second-class citizens for all the months between the launch of the tablet computer and the day that they were finally able to put iOS4.2 on their devices. After all, users of the iPhone had been using those new features for many months. Even with the joy experienced by consumer users, the potential business user may have been a yet happier camper. The features added with 4.2 were just those that could make the iPad a winner in the boardroom as well as at home. Apple’s tablet may well be as useful now as a business tool as it is as a consumer tool.
As noted in an InformationWeek story, iOS4.2 benefitted the iPad more than the iPhone, since most of the features that were new to the iPad had been on the iPhone for months. The iPad will also benefit from this situation, since corporate IT departments have had time to learn the features that will make life easier for them while working with them on the iPhone. Although there are more features for both new with 4.2, IT departments have a head start with remote management features, the find-my-iphone feature and items like multitasking, improved mail management, and folders that are coming to the iPad for the first time.
All of these features make the iPad an easier sell to IT departments. Having learned the management tools while working with the iPhone is also a big plus, so that the smaller device can pave the way for the larger (and potentially more useful) iPad. And although an iPad certainly does not have the power of a notebook, its feature set is definitely enough for a lot of corporate employees, giving them the tools to do their jobs in a decidedly small, and distinctly cool, form factor. With iOS 4.2 on board, the iPad becomes a much better weapon in the corporate arsenal.