So there's a lot of threads on different apps and things to use to help out with cake business's.
But I am looking at getting a tablet and I want to know what people use and what works.
Do you use an ipad for keeping track of your orders?
or do you use a samsung tablet for doing sketches and designs?
Or do you use a computer for everything?
Tell me what works for you.
I want to see how different people manage everything.
Thanks in advance,
I'm a tekkie person so you have to forgive me for the vent I'm about to make. In my opinion, and the opinion of most in the IT field, iPads are useless. They do not take the place of a PC by any stretch of the imagination. I have one for work. The only reason I have it is to test web applications I design. I need to see how they work for mobile devices. It's my understanding that you can use Square with a mobile device to accept payments, which may be useful to you if you take credit or debit cards for your orders.
Save the money and invest in a good laptop. Laptops aren't even that expensive anymore, and they are just as mobile as an iPad. You can do anything on a PC, and since there are so many open-source programs out there, you should have no problems getting something to use for your orders. If you have MS Word (or even if you don't-download Open Office) you can use their shapes to make your sketches. I have done that on several occasions.
AI agree that laptops are the better option for running a business (and getting actual work done) for now, productivity software hasn't yet caught up to take advantage of the touch interface. This will probably change in the next 5 or so years though.
AI was staying far away from the ipad, my business is not very big, I work full time and just do cakes as something extra, I wont do more then two for the same week. And sometimes its a month or 2 between paid ones. I use my laptop for keeping track of my orders, in an excell spreadsheet. But I dont like having a book that has all my sketches in, I always run out of room on the pages and its always messy. So I was looking at having a samsung 10.1 tablet to keep all my sketches on and to keep my orders on. Nothing for payments (I only take cash or Bank transfer) or invoices. I had never thought of using word for sketches!
I have a ipad and a laptop and use them for different things. If you have to buy only one, get a laptop. The ipad is limited in what it can do (It's difficult to manage photos, won't work with flash or blogspot, etc.) It's good for taking credit cards and being able to hand to a client and pass around the table at appointments easily. It's also good for doing little sketches, but like I said, it's incompatible with a lot of programs that I use regularly. I use it for quick things, then when I need to do real work I get the laptop out.
I think the best use of a tablet for a cake decorating business is for showing off your work. You can keep pictures on it and more importantly, because you can pinch to zoom in on the pictures you can really show off the details.
When I got my iPad I swore to make it a tool, not a toy. So I made it my mission to see how much I could use it - and I have surprised myself because I use it a LOT. I have Splashtop so I can log into my home PC. It's fab if I'm at the bakery and need to take an order - I log into my home PC thru Splashtop, open Quickbooks and add a new order (there is no QB for ipad). I also have all my recipes in an Excel document so I use Dropbox to upload it from my PC and Calc lite Pro to open and use use it. My ipad is literally my recipe book. I don't write any of my recipes down and I don't print them - everything is on my ipad. I use Timer+ to run multiple timers for different things I have in the oven, I use Tierdcaker to figure cake sizes and print quick cutting charts, Hey Tel to send quick voice text messages to my husband since I get crappy cell service where I work, and I use AidaReminder set to beep once an hour to remind me to drink some water and roll out my shoulders. I use Register (formerly Square) to take credit card payments and have speakers I plug it into to run Pandora to shake my booty to all day.
I also instagram, facebook and tweet from it, but that's a given. I also love Meetingburner for on-screen long distance consultations and use Skype.
I have other aps on it, but those are the ones I use all the time.