December 23, 2010, 11:45 AM — The traditional notebook and netbook PCs have been joined by tablets like the iPad, and increasingly powerful smartphones to make computing while tethered to a desk almost a foreign concept. But, there is still a difference between a little Web surfing or text messaging on the go, and a business professional that relies on mobile technology to get the job done: a road warrior.
An Apple iPad might suffice as a mobile computing device for some--even the iPhone or top Android smartphones like the Droid X can do the trick in a pinch. Road warriors, though, have different needs and need a different bag of tricks to stay productive on the go. Here are a few things any stalwart road warrior could use in their survival kit:
Mobile Broadband Hotspot. One thing that desk workers sitting in an office take for granted is being connected to the network and the Internet. Mobile professionals can use public Wi-Fi hotspots like those at Starbucks or McDonald's--but those have some additional security concerns and may not always be conveniently located (although near my house you can find one or both in any given quarter mile radius).
A mobile broadband hotspot like the Clearwire Puck or the Virgin Mobile MiFI let road warriors set up personal Wi-Fi hotspots that connect over 3G or 4G cellular networks to access online resources from virtually anywhere.
Myinnergie mCube Mini. Laptops have improved drastically over time, but even the best can't usually make it through a business day without needing to be recharged. The massive power brick that seems to be the standard for mobile PC power cords isn't very portable, though. This miniature gadget fits in the palm of your hand and can plug in to 12v car outlets or outlets provided on commercial aircraft to give your laptop some juice.
Aegis Padlock Drive. Laptop hard drives have increased in capacity, but the storage space is still finite. Plus, some companies require an act of Congress to allow a third-party visitor to connect to the internal network, making a portable USB hard drive one of the more convenient methods of sharing data with clients or partners when the need arises.