Developers are in the business of becoming more efficient. Anything that can help them build better applications or websites is good for business. For many smart developers, the insurgence of tablet PCs is a godsend. They can easily code and test applications on the go, and switch back to their laptop or desktop PC to more in-depth coding and troubleshooting. Really, it’s not much of a stretch to see why developers gravitate to tablets for their coding needs. But is the PC really dead, or at least dying quickly?

The Truth About the PC vs. Tablet Argument for Developers

The death of the PC has been predicted for a good long while now. As new technologies arise, industry analysts scramble with their predictions of the PC’s end. But according to a recent article in InfoWorld, tablets may represent the final nail in the coffin. Another Canalys study indicated that Windows-based PCs are in sharp decline, and that for the first time in computing history, tablet PCs and other mobile computing devices will outsell traditional laptops and desktops. Still, the majority of web and app developers will continue to use a hybrid approach when it comes to the machines they use to do their jobs.

Optimizing a PC/Tablet Hybrid System for Development

For web developers especially, designing a perfect hybrid system can be heavy duty if they’re running a local server. This is where a virtual private server really comes in handy. In fact, many Rails developers recommend this route for managing WebDev data effectively on multiple devices. Check with a company like Rackspace to see if this will work for your development team.

BYOD? Some Pros and Cons

Bring Your Own Device policies are making splashes in development firms all over the world. It’s not much of a stretch to see why developers, who work largely by themselves and micromanage their own daily tasks, would find the idea of using their own devices for work desirable.

The flexibility of bringing their work to and from home can make life easier in some ways. However, on the company side, the BYOD phenomenon doesn’t look so pretty all of the time. In fact, there are several data security issues that tend to pop up. One of the most pressing issues is related to how company data is handled and managed after an employee who worked in development leaves the company.

How does the development firm ensure their trade secrets and unique processes aren’t leaked to a competitor? The big problem is that there’s virtually no sustainable to do this. Most web development firms are much better off providing their development devices in-house.

In the development world, the question of tablets vs. PCs is virtually irrelevant. The benefit of using a tablet has to do with flexibility. Developers can work on projects on the go. But odds are they need a little more LCD real estate than is available on a 10-inch tablet. The best solution is a hybrid solution, where development groundwork is laid on a PC, but further tested and implemented on a tablet. This way developers can have the best of both worlds, and everyone’s happy. Right?