Reuters has a great story today in its Technology section about how the iPad is capturing the imagination of businesses across Asia, many of whom are already adopting it as a vital part of their business strategy.
Reuters gives several examples, including Novarese Inc, a wedding service firm in Japan that is using iPads to help customers select their wedding dresses at its store in Tokyo’s upmarket Ginza district. Shop assistants use the iPad to show customers videos of catwalk models wearing the wedding dresses in their collection.
“We once considered showing it to customers on laptops but they are heavy. The iPad perfectly fits our demand,” company spokeswoman Kazuka Nohara told Reuters. “We also found something unexpected. Grooms are now more proactive in selecting a wedding dress.”
Also in Japan, Otsuka Pharmaceutical plans to buy 1,300 iPads so that its sales reps can make their presentations more visual and up-to-date.
Elsewhere, Intercontinental Hotels is giving iPads to its concierges in hotels in various cities such as Hong Kong, London and New York, so that they can use them to recommend restaurants and local destinations to visitors. All very encouraging news as far as Apple is concerned, although some analysts still sound a note of caution.
“Whether it ultimately becomes a useful tool in a corporate environment will depend on the ability of software developers to adapt business software to the new style of interface,” Tim Renowden, an analyst at technology consultancy Ovum told Reuters.