Do you prefer a laptop? or a smartphone?

According to a recent mobile workforce survey from iPass, nearly two-thirds of 695 surveyed employees said they would prefer a smartphone instead of a notebook computer.  I don’t always carry my laptop with me but I would never leave my office without my smartphone.

Smartphone is a very powerful computer; some of the latest smartphones have equipped with 1 GHz CPU and 512 MB memory.  I used it to check email, surf the web, blogging, social networking and even VoIP.  I am not alone!  Global mobile data traffic surpassed voice during December of 2009, after growing 280 per cent during each of the last two years. Swedish vendor Ericsson forecasted global mobile data traffic would be double annually over the next five years.

We can also use our smartphone to provide internet access to our laptop / tablet.  It is called tethering.  Although we can find WiFi hotspots in a lot of places, e.g. coffee shops, hotels or libraries; it is not everywhere yet and we may have to pay for the usage or it is too slow due to traffic congestion.  Another concern of public WiFi is its security; most of the public WiFi do not scramble the data.  Thus, tethering can be very useful; it provides anywhere, anytime internet access in a relatively more secure environment.

Our cellular providers may already provide tethering without additional charge; Rogers announced tethering would be free for customers who subscribe to data plans of 1 GB and above.  Please confirm with your own provider about the availability and cost of tethering.

I am going to show you how to use tethering with my Blackberry. 

· First, I started the Blackberry Desktop Manager.

· Click IP Modem.


· If this is the first time that you use tethering, click the Configure… button.


· Click OK button to return to the above dialogue.

· Click Connect button.


· A warning message would be displayed, click Continue button.


· Now you are connected and if you want to disconnect, simply click the Disconnect button.


You can now enjoy the freedom of a mobile worker!

Andrew Chan is the owner and founder of ALG Inc.

About Andrew Chan
Andrew Chan is an Business Consultant who gives you accurate, consistent and timely information so that you can make better and faster decisions. He is an Associate of Society of Actuaries with over 20 years of IT experience. Apart from strong analytical skills and proven technical background, he was also a former system director at Manulife who had extensive project management experience. If you are looking for someone to gather, consolidate, validate, visualize and analyze data, look no further! Andrew can provide the most cost effective business analytics solution so that you can explore, optimize, predict and visualize your business. Don’t guess on any decision, no matter it is finance, operation, marketing or sales! Always ask for evidence!

2 Responses to Do you prefer a laptop? or a smartphone?

  1. Karen Hickey says:

    Andrew, good article and tips for getting more out of the smartphone, particularly for those willing to leave the laptop behind for a bit. Even during leisure time, I think that most mobile workers (especially those “Mobile Maniacs”) are using the phones for work access.

  2. Andrew Chan says:

    Hi Karen,

    Most senior and middle management won’t leave their office without their smartphone. However, there are situations that we prefer a bigger screen.

    So my dream is that my smartphone can be integrated into a tablet. The tablet would be just a touch screen device with not CPU, nor memory. When I need to do a presentation / software demo, I plugin the smartphone into the dumb tablet. If I go out for a diner or movie, then I can unplug the smartphone from the tablet.

    I have sent my idea to various major smartphone manufracturers but so far no reply. Do you mind to do a survey and see if there are other “Mobile Maniacs” like this idea.

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