Tablets, while they might not be the preferred browsing device of many consumers, find a home in the hands of the casual user and many business professionals everyday. Sure, tablets make great media consumption devices, but they also do an exceptional job at performing business related tasks in varying industries – namely, sales. Stay tuned for our list of the best tablets for sales professionals.
Traveling sales professionals, what some may call “road warriors,” need quick and easy access to their various CRM softwares such as SalesForce and Insightly, the ability to give on-demand presentations and the capability to have documents and contracts signed digitally while out in the field. There are a ton of options on the market that make this all possible, but what tablet is the right choice?
Take a look at our list of the top tablets for sales professionals below.
[Price: $1,276 (MateDock,Portfolio Keyboard, and MatePen Bundle]
First on our list is the HUAWEI MateBook. Huawei burst onto the scene in the states with their mid to high range mobile phones, including the one manufactured for Google and branded under the Nexus line – the Nexus 6P. Back in July of 2016, HUAWEI threw their hat in the tablet/2-in-1 ring with the MateBook, aiming to compete with the likes of the iPad Pro and Microsoft Surface line.
For sales professionals, the MateBook will be a desirable machine for a couple of reasons. One, it packs a solid punch for its size. Inside that thin tablet chasis is Intel’s Core M processor, up to 512 GB SSD, and the option for either 4 or 8 GB of RAM running full Windows 10. So, needless to say this tablet was designed to be a workhorse. Unfortunately, industry reviews have not told the same story, with some users reporting that the tablet gets a bit sluggish under load.
The second reason HUAWEI’s 2-in-1 would be of interest is its aesthetics. When you’re walking in for a sales presentation, you want to look professional. HUAWEI put a lot of effort in to the device’s design, especially its accessories – the MateDock, Portfolio Keyboard and MatePen (all of which are available at an additional cost.) Clients will surely be impressed when you fold out the leather keyboard case and MateDock – which is essentially a stylish adapter.
If you’re comfortable sacrificing a bit of performance for a lot of aesthetics, the MateBook is something you should consider. Take a look at Huawei Matebook review to learn more about it.
[Price: $824.94 (128GB, WiFi + Cellular)]
There’s no arguing that Apple makes some of the best tablets on the market, but until the release of the iPad Pro, they just weren’t built for sales professionals. iOS is undoubtably the easiest OS to become familiar with and get around in for the common user, but it has never (in my opinion) been optimized for true multi-tasking and work performance. With the iPad Pro and iOS 10, Apple is aiming to bridge that gap from couch surfing/creativity device, to something more work focused.
The iPad Pro’s Smart Keyboard and Apple Pencil, combined with some of the new multitasking functionality of iOS 10 make this a device worthy of accompanying a sales person on their client visits. The Smart Keyboard, despite having keys that are bit spongey, makes emailing on the go much easier than before, and if you need to get something signed, or jot down notes in a meeting, the Apple Pencil has received nothing but rave reviews since its release.
We opted for the 9.7″ model for our best tablets for sales professionals list not only for it’s more travel-friendly size, but it also has a better on-board camera. Compared to it’s big brother, the iPad Pro 9.7 gets you four more megapixels on the rear camera, bringing it to 12MP, and also a jump to 4K recording as opposed to 1080p. Depending on the line of sales you are in, that camera could come in handy.
Samsung, known foremost for their premium line of Android handsets, has a solid history of tablets that are great for productivity. Their latest premium slab is the Galaxy Tab Pro S 12″. This 2-in-1, different from Sammy’s previous tablets, opts for the Windows 10 OS instead of Android. When it comes to sales professionals, this seems like the right route to take given the compatibility of Windows with many CRM systems.
Like the two devices above, the Tab Pro S has its own proprietary keyboard with full-size keys and decent key travel for what it is. This keyboard is akin to what you’d find on Microsoft’s Surface Type Cover. Unfortunately, while working on-the-go, some users may be disappointed in the lack of complete viewing angle versatility. With the Tab Pro S, and included keyboard stand, you’re limited to only two angles. But hey, two is better than one I suppose.
Like the MateBook, the Tab Pro S rock’s Intel’s Core M CPU. This is great for multitasking – switching between productivity apps, CRMs, email, etc. However, it suffers the same fate as HUAWEI’s 2-in-1, getting a bit sluggish when throwing too much at it. While I do think this device deserves a spot on the list, I really wish Samsung would have included the incredibly useful S Pen to top this off as a sales device. For more information, check out our Samsung Galaxy TabPro S review!
[Price: $738.93 (128 GB, 4GB RAM, Intel Core i5)]
From its inception, Microsoft’s line of surface tablets has been positioned as the ultimate productivity tablet, and the “Tablet that can replace your laptop.” Taking it a step further, Microsoft commonly pits its premium Surface slabs against Apple’s thin and portable MacBook Air – saying how the tablet can outperform the dedicated laptop.
As the Surface line continues to develop, it becomes more evident just how capable a 2-in-1 can be. The latest in the lineup, the Microsoft Surface Pro 4, has bested its predecessors in specs and design, and we can only expect the coming devices to do the same. What lands this the Surface Pro 4 on the list might be obvious – the versatility and “polish” of the tablet. While it is unfortunate that the Type Cover is not included with the tablet, running you an extra $129, pairing the two together makes for an impressive work machine.
Presenting is a crucial part of sales. If you need something portable, that can still work with many projectors, the Surface Pro 4 might be your best bet. It has a full-size USB 3 port and a MiniDisplay Port built in. Between these two, you should be able to adapt to just about any projector.
The Surface Pro 4 is ideal for working in remote locations like coffee shops or even aboard airplanes because of the fully-adjustable viewing angles offered with the Type Cover – again, sold separately. Pair that with the included Surface Pen, and you’ve got a great productivity machine for someone who needs to perform a range of tasks on the go, including sketching notes, signing documents and of course handling email. To find out more, check out our full Microsoft Surface Pro 4 review.
Yes, we know the Lenovo Yoga 900s is not technically a tablet, but, given that it falls in line with some of the pricing on this list (especially for some of the specced-out tablets) and offers similar versatility, here we are. The Yoga 900s is quite comparable to a couple of the other devices on this list when it comes to performance, namely the Surface Pro 4. However, with this machine you get a couple of extra goodies. For starters, it is a dedicated laptop, so you aren’t being charged extra for that luxury. You’ll also be happy to note the inclusion of a USB-C port, making it more compatible with existing hardware you may already have with this new standard.
If a tablet is really what you’re after, the Yoga line is characterized by its 180˚ foldable form-factor. Folding the device backwards (check out that sweet hinge) disables the keyboard and will prompt you to begin using the device in Windows 10 tablet mode. The rigidity of the hinge is excellent for one-to-one presentations. Simply prop your Yoga up in the tent mode – or whatever you would like to call it – and start your slideshow. Once you close the deal, fold the Yoga all the way back and have your clients sign away. It is worth noting that you won’t find any included stylus here.
Overall, the Yoga 900s, while not the latest and greatest of the Yoga line, is a solid device for road warriors. It’s thin design offers better portability than you would find with the MacBook Air, and as mentioned above, more versatility when out there making deals. Our Lenovo Yoga 900s review goes into greater detail about the device, including performance benchmarks, screen details and more.
When it comes to choosing a device that you’re happy to take on the road with you everyday, it really comes down to determining what will work best for you personally. What features are most important to you, and what is going to make your job a tiny bit easier/more enjoyable?
If one-to-one presentations are something you run across often, you might opt for the Yoga 900s. If a professional and stylish appeal ranks high with your clients, the HUAWEI MateBook might be the best choice. And, if you’re already familiar and comfortable with the Apple/iOS ecosystem, the iPad Pro might be the obvious front runner.
What tablets do you think would work well for sales professionals? Let us know in the comments below!