Not long ago, tablets were viewed by many as media consumption devices with little value as business tools. That point of view has changed.

Thanks to new hardware features and useful new software applications, tablets have earned a secure place in the business world. And thanks to its steadily increasing market share, the Android operating system is now home to some of the most exciting business apps for tablets.

Here are five of the best.

Dropbox

There are several strong contenders in the cloud storage category, but Dropbox is perhaps the best choice. The app is well-designed, well-supported, stable and easy to navigate.

An automatic sync feature makes the process virtually automatic. While the company only offers a few gigabytes of free storage, rates for additional storage are reasonable, and more free storage can be earned through referrals.

Square Register

Square Register has the power to transform the way a business operates. The brainchild of Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, the mobile payment processing app takes a flat percentage on each credit and debit card swipe, and helps business owners minimize additional transaction fees.

The app is well-designed and very easy to use, and helps minimize the pain of card processing.

Google Drive

Google Drive offers an easy way to create and share documents in the cloud. Perhaps the best feature of the app is its near-universal adoption — virtually everyone in the business world has a Google account, which means online document collaboration is just a step or two away.

OpenTable

Let’s face it: a lot of business is sealed over the lunch or dinner table. So the ability to seamlessly secure restaurant reservations is a boon for business. OpenTable allows users to book reservations in real time, read reviews and earn credit toward free meals.

OfficeSuite Pro 7

OfficeSuite Pro is one of the most popular Android business apps, and that status is well earned. It offers great functionality and lets you create and share Microsoft Office files on the go. Integration is also a plus — OfficeSuite Pro works well with Dropbox, Google Drive and other business applications.

Thanks to the increasing popularity of Android, tablet owners had a large selection of high-quality business apps from which to choose in 2013. This year, with software refinements and exciting new technology on the horizon, expect more great apps to follow.

Like this post? Share it!