Why did you decide to be a Virtual Assistant? Was it a lifestyle choice – a better work / life balance? To live anywhere you wanted? To be your own boss? Or perhaps something entirely. Whatever your reason, we wouldn’t be able to do it so easily without the technology that’s available today.

Even for those of you who have been in the business a number of years, you must admit, it’s so much easier nowadays with all the tools and gadgets available – if only from a price perspective.

So what do you use? What item has made your work life easier? Do you switch between devices often?

I switch between two devices depending on where I am. Since I move around a lot (living in SW France for the last year and now just about to move across to the Alps for the winter) I have a laptop rather than a desktop PC (or Mac) as it’s important for me to be able to pack up and go with ease. When I’m physically out and about, I use my Samsung S3 Smartphone which I gotta say I just love! It has a large enough screen to use with ease, a good battery life so I can use it for longer periods of time, and the setup of email accounts and cloud solutions was really straight forward. It’s given me the piece of mind that if a Client contacts me whilst I’m on the road, I don’t need to panic since I’ll be able to handle any situation professionally.

Deciding on your home-office, whether you choose a laptop for portability or whether you choose to have a desktop PC, will come down to your individual needs and preferences. A couple of good resources I’ve found when researching what to buy next are reviews.cnet.co.uk and pcadvisor.co.uk both of which provide user and expert reviews.

In terms of the more portable devices for when you’re heading out to a client meeting, going to a networking event, or just having your hair done, there are so many options available that it can be a little overwhelming. So here to help if you’re upgrading your mobile device any time soon, are  the top choices according to The top techie experts:

Best Smartphone’s

The current Top 5 of 2012 are:

  1. Google Nexus 4: The only apparent downside of this Smartphone is the small internal storage space. But with cloud solutions available that may not bother you, so therefore this option provides great value for money.
  2. Nokia Lumia 920: The very latest phone from Nokia using Windows 8 technology, the only major downside being that it’s quite a bit chunkier than other Smartphone’s.
  3. Samsung Galaxy Note 2: Running between a phone and a PDA, this can be a little trickier to use due to size. But if you like using a stylus to write things down, then it’s a good choice with fast performance.
  4. Iphone 5: With a larger screen and faster performance this is supposedly the iPhone to put Apple back among the Android leaders.
  5. Motorola Razr 1: The first Motorola phone in partnership with Intel. It’s great on performance due to the Atom processor and has a large ‘edge-to-edge’ display making it another great value-for-money Smartphone.

Best Tablets

The current Top 5 of 2012 are:

  1. Apple iPad 4: This is the quickest iPad yet with a superb battery life. Experts can’t seem to fault it.
  2. Google Nexus 7: This is a well made, smaller sized tablet which offers fantastic value. But for that reason there aren’t some features you’d normally expect from a Smartphone such as camera or adequate storage.
  3. Microsoft Surface RT: A business like tablet with a good size screen whilst remaining relatively thin. The only quibble apparently is with regards holding it in landscape format– due to its weight after a time it could cause wrist strain.
  4. Apple iPad mini: With pretty much all of the same features as the regular iPad, this is a fab alternative if you want something a little smaller and lightweight.
  5. Asus Transformer Pad Infinity TF700: A slim, stylish, multipurpose tablet with good storage and fantastic image quality, but on the slightly higher end of the price scale.

If you’ve got any of your own recommendations (or criticism’s) of the devices you use, please share them below.