Has the ‘iEgo’ Got the Touch? CEOs Driving iPad Popularity

Is the collective executive will of America’s CEOs largely responsible for how iPads are taking U.S. workplaces and boardrooms by storm?

It’s certainly a leading factor, or so argued a panel of experts at the just-concluded CloudBeat 2011 conference. That panel partially laid the credit (or the blame) for the rampant popularity of the iPad directly at the feet of America’s CEOs … and, more specifically, the egos of those CEOs.

The iPad isn’t even two years old, having launched back in January, 2010. Just ten months after its release, “more than 80% of the Fortune 100 — including JPMorgan Chase, Cardinal Health, Wells Fargo, Sears Holdings and DuPont,” were already “deploying or piloting the iPad.”

It took the iPhone much longer to gain this kind of traction. So what’s the secret of the iPad’s success?

The CloudBeat panel, which The Washington Post called “a consensus among a panel of cloud computing and enterprise experts,” cited these four factors:

  • New business environment factors;
  • The device’s convenient, large-screen form;
  • Increased access to cloud services; and
  • CEO ego.

“This is the first situation where the top is driving technology adoption,” commented Nick Mehta, CEO of LiveOffice. “The CEO gets one, he goes to the IT department and he asks, ‘why don’t we support this?'”

“It is not usually the role of the CEO to get directly involved in specific technology device decisions, but Apple’s iPad is an exception,” noted Stephen Prentice, Gartner Fellow and vice president, earlier this year.

“The tablet is corporate bling for executives,” added Forbes contributor Tom Taulli, the panel’s moderator. “When you get the ego going, you can sell a lot of software in the organization.”

Vineet Jain, CEO and co-founder of Egnyte, took a negative view, arguing that the trend leads to lost efficiency since the iPad is no replacement for a desktop or laptop computer. “When you need to reference four things simultaneously — bullshit, you can’t do that [on an iPad].”

What do you think? Are America’s CEOs driving the popularity and adoption of the iPad, or does this report sound a little sensationalistic? As always, your comments are welcome — sound off and let us know your thoughts below.

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About the Author: Nathan Denny

Nathan Denny is a writer/editor and content/search consultant based in California. Email him at or find him on LinkedIn at a

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