iPad at Work: 10 Apps to Simplify Collaboration

iPad at Work: 10 Apps to Simplify Collaboration

Some of you may have managed to get your hands on the brand new iPad, and have already taken the time to really enjoy the stunning retina display through a variety of photo apps, games and HD videos. But how can the iPad be used as an effective business tool?

We’ve collected a few of the best iPad apps in various categories such as collaboration, Business intelligence (reporting), idea capturing, productivity (word, spreadsheet and presentation editors) and apps for the IT professional, end user and busy high-level exec.

In this post we will be focusing on apps that boost the iPad’s incredible collaboration potential.

 

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iPad collaboration apps: BoardVantage Collaborate

BoardVantage Collaborate (Free)

Board Vantage Collaborate is not just any collaboration app: it is specifically designed as a collaboration app for directors/ executives. As such, Board Vantage has implemented extensive security policies to meet and potentially exceed stringent security standards put in place by IT departments. The app is SAS70 Type II certified.

The app gives you access to:

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  • Board and committee books accessible with a single swipe
  • Bookmarks for quick access to particular sections within large books
  • Attendees, arrangements and updates at your fingertips
  • Bird’s-eye view of previous board and committee meetings
  • Continue reviewing and annotating downloaded materials

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Although the app is free, it does require a subscription.

Cisco WebEx Meeting (Free)

Say hello to the tablet version of Cisco’s hugely popular online meeting application. The WebEx Meeting app comes with a wide range of features for hosting and joining a video conference, making it useful for large Enterprises and global corporations.

Features:

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  • Multipoint video
  • 2-way video with camera switcher
  • Voice-activated video switching
  • View content and video simultaneously
  • Schedule, start, and cancel a meeting
  • Invite others to a meeting
  • Pass presenter capabilities to another participant
  • Join via WebEx meeting email invite, meeting number, WebEx site URL, or My Meetings List
  • Integrated VoIP audio and web conferencing on Wi-Fi and 3G
  • View attendee list
  • View shared content with annotations
  • Pinch to zoom and scan
  • Private or group chat
  • Cisco TelePresence WebEx OneTouch support

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VabletLite (Free)

Vablet, developed by Meiotic, offers a solution to distribute content (documents, pictures, videos, PDFs, spreadsheets etc) to any devices on your enterprise network. In addition to this, the app also offers the ability for IT departments to wipe content and block devices from accessing the network. The data is encrypted with Apple’s Data Protection API and can be pushed out to devices using a variety of secure protocols, including HTTPS, STFP, SSH and VPN.

iPad collaboration apps: Whiteboard HDWhiteboard HD ($5.49)

The good old whiteboard has served as an invaluable tool in brainstorming and explaining ideas or concepts. Now you can bring the whiteboard out of the meeting room and into, well anywhere and everywhere!

This app brings brainstorming and sketching diagrams to the tablet. The toolset is everything you’d expect from a basic whiteboard – basic shapes, text, line and freeform drawing tools. You can also add an image from your photo library – either as an object or as the diagram’s background. Changing stroke color for lines or objects is pretty easy (as long as you tackle them up front) and comes with a lot of options.

Sharing your ideas is simple, as you can not only send editable Whiteboard HD files, but you can also share a board live with other Whiteboard HD users over a WiFi network, making collaboration that much simpler. The app also has full DropBox and Box.net support as well as giving you the option of using your Whiteboard for presentations using the VGA adapter. They’ve even included a “laser point mode” for external displays, making Whiteboard HD a useful app for presentations.

iPad collaboration apps: SyncPadSyncPad ($10.49)

SyncPad is, like Whiteboard HD, essentially a “remote whiteboard”. However, unlike WhiteBoard HD, SyncPad enables you to create a virtual meeting room to outline ideas to colleagues via a virtual whiteboard. This app comes with DropBox integration

Features:

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  • Real-time interactive whiteboard
  • Multiple colors, stroke sizes
  • Multi-page PDF support
  • Import pictures from your library
  • Real-time sharing with another SyncPad, SyncPad reader or a browser.
  • Multi-user rooms
  • Share via e-mail or save to your library
  • One-tap erase function

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iMeetingPad ($2.99)

This app is designed to help you organise and share notes taken from meetings. The interface is simple; once the app is launched it immediately starts off with a blank sheet of paper, with a section to include “meeting info” you can fill out at the top. The app also offers drawing tools to allow users to capture charts or diagrams that are discussed with the option of many different colors, lines, fills, shapes etc. Once the meeting is finished, the app instantly converts your notes into PDF and attaches it to a new messahe in the iPad’s email app using the built-in mail feature. iMeetingPad will automatically take any text in your meeting notes and includes it in the body of the mail message, giving the viewer an idea of the contents.

The app can also be used as a overhead projector by hooking the iPad up to an external display.

iPad collaboration apps: Fuze Meeting HD

Fuze Meeting HD (Free)

Like Cisco WebEx Meeting, Fuze Meeting HD is suited more towards larger companies, with a wide range of features. The app allows you to both host and participate in meetings, while using in-app VoIP via the iPad mic or calling into the Fuze-generated conferencing number to tune into audio. As the host, you can invite people and add content like locally stored images and documents and items that have been previously loaded into your Fuze library online. You can also manage attendees with features like muting all lines and in-app use of chat networks such as AIM, Yahoo Messenger, Windows Live Messengers, Google Talk and Fuze chat to both communicate with or invite attendees. Like most video conferencing apps, Fuze Meeting HD has Dropbox integration to allow you to share files from the Dropbox app on your iPad. Presenters can zoom and pinch content, as well as use a red laser pointer to draw attention to a particular item of interest, making Fuze Meeting HD a useful tool for virtual presentations.

GoToMeeting (Free)

Unlike some of its competitors, GoToMeeting focuses solely on providing users with a simple, straightforward web conferencing solution. To start a meeting is as simple as one-click, invitations can be distributed on the fly and users are afforded two options with audio conferencing; VoIP or a toll-free call-in number. GoToMeeting was certainly targeted more towards small businesses with a 15 attendee limit unless you upgrade to a Corporate account. While the app is free to download and you can hold unlimited meetings, you need to hold a license to host meetings.

Features:

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  • Attend online meetings wherever you are – at no charge.
  • Join meetings in seconds by tapping a link in an email.
  • View presentations, mockups and reports – whatever the presenter shares on-screen.
  • Pinch to zoom meeting content.
  • Switch between portrait and landscape.
  • See who’s presenting, who’s talking and who else is attending.
  • Connect to audio through your iPad or using your phone.
  • Enable HD video conferencing.

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Yammer (Free)

Internal collaboration is a very valuable and sometimes overlooked component within companies of all sizes. What better way to foster better communication within and across departments, teams or countries, than to create an enterprise-friendly social network? Yammer allows users to collaborate privately and securely only with members of the company and selected partners as required, which presents a favourable alternative to other social network platforms. The app is designed to extend the functionality of the desktop version of Yammer, which works on a monthly subscription fee and allows the user to access messages, post updates, and receive important notifications from Yammer.

iPad collaboration apps: HUddle V2Huddle V2 (Free)

As suggested by the name, Huddle facilitates collaboration by allowing users to “huddle” together virtually to get work done. As with Yammer, this app is once again designed to build upon the concept of collaboration ‘anytime, anywhere’ by bringing the software’s functionality to the iPad. Huddle can automatically sync your documents to your devices to allow for offline viewing , while also giving the user access to everything happening on Huddle including tasks and a newsfeed on activity from team members using the software.

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