Surrey County Council is trialling Research In Motion's (RIM) PlayBook tablet device with its social workers.
Paul Brocklehurst, head of IT at the council, explained that the device's speed and simplicity are its main strengths.
"When social workers meet clients it's often in difficult circumstances. Quality of conversation is important. They don't want a huge device that takes time to power up; they want something quick and simple like the PlayBook."
Brocklehurst added that RIM's device also meets government security standards.
"It's fully encrypted, and the data is all centrally stored," he said.
This is in contrast to Apple's iPad, according to Brocklehurst.
"The iPad has some security issues, and doesn't meet the relevant government standards."
Some organisations that are either trialling or rolling out tablet devices are also pursuing bring-your-own IT strategies, in which staff are encouraged to use personal devices at work.
However, while Brocklehurst said he liked the idea, he explained that it did not comply with government standards.
"At the moment, consumerisation raises security concerns, and it falls foul of goverment security restrictions."
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