A hint of a lightweight laptop with a dashof a really big handset, tablets are still retail banking use-case nomads, in search of the best ways to get consumers excited and curious. Wherever the new devices are finding a comfort zone, in places such as sales and investing, tablets like Apple's iPads and RIM's Playbook are proving to be just as un-encumbered as their smartphone cousins.

"You can literally conduct business anywhere with mobile tablets,and in real time," says Nadia Darwisch, vp of client relations and business development for group retirement services for SunLife Financial Canada. "Not to mention, sales and service staff can demonstrate key services, like wireless enrollment, on the tablet."

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