Will Microsoft Convert RIM Enterprise Smartphone, Datacard Users?

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Even though smartphone penetration at the enterprise level hasn't topped 10 percent yet, a recent poll conducted by InfoTech, a division of The Telecom Intelligence Group, of enterprise wireless subscribers found 84 percent of respondents saying they use a smartphone, with BlackBerry the Number One choice, followed by Palm Treo and models made by HTC*. Their goal: Sending and receiving e-mail on the fly.

Even though smartphone penetration at the enterprise level hasn't topped 10 percent yet, a recent poll conducted by InfoTech, a division of The Telecom Intelligence Group, of enterprise wireless subscribers found 84 percent of respondents saying they use a smartphone, with BlackBerry the Number One choice, followed by Palm Treo and models made by HTC*. Their goal: Sending and receiving e-mail on the fly.

How that e-mail is administered could be changing, though. According to a new InfoTech "InfoTrack for Enterprise Mobility" report, "Wireless Smartphone and Datacard Analysis, November 2007," Windows Mobile finally is making some advances in terms of the OS against longtime leader and BlackBerry parent Research In Motion (RIM). As such, the world essentially will come down to RIM vs. Microsoft in the enterprise market, and companies need to make some decisions based on how their employees will work outside of the office.

The report provides C-level executives and IT managers with the information needed to make important, cost-effective smartphone and datacard decisions moving forward by defining what's happening at the enterprise level with these two productivity tools via input from real users at real companies.

"The question is: What and why do users need Microsoft? Is it to sync with Outlook? Is it to view Microsoft documents?," comments Mike O'Neill, vice president and publisher, The Telecom Intelligence Group. "If neither of these answers is a resounding 'yes,' then we would suggest RIM, based on the reliability of the Number One technology for smartphones besides voice: e-mail."

More than 70 percent of respondents said e-mail is the most important function of a smartphone, followed by Internet Wi-Fi access at a distant 12 percent, again confirming the reality of enterprise smartphone usage. More than 80 percent of respondents indicated they supplemented e-mail with SMS messaging because the response time for SMS is not dependent on e-mail servers and other latency issues that could delay the need for instant communications.

When it comes to wireless datacards, 49% of survey respondents across all enterprise sizes said they were using them, with nearly 38 percent reporting a preference for the Verizon Wireless network. Sprint the second-largest base at 24 percent. And here are the brand preferences specified by respondents: Sierra Wireless (34 percent), Novatel (22 percent) and Sony Ericsson (16 percent).

"Forty percent of current wireless datacard users already are equipped with the fastest technology available at this time, while only 56 percent of overall wireless datacard users believe the speeds are fast enough for their current needs," adds O'Neill. "And brand loyalty for wireless datacards doesn't exist. Our report says nearly 80 percent of wireless datacard users polled would switch to gain access to faster technology. And the same holds true for wireless carriers; 81 percent of our respondents would switch operators to get faster speeds."

"Wireless Smartphone and Datacard Analysis, November 2007" is available today for $3,999. The 88-page report includes more than 100 charts and graphs. For more information, visit http://www.telecomweb.com/iemsmartdata07/. To purchase this report or other services from The Telecom Intelligence Group, please contact Mike O'Neill at moneill@telecomweb.com or at 973/602-0114.

  • The HTC brand is not as well-known within the U.S. market because its smartphones typically are white-labeled by carriers. But because it is the leading supplier of Windows Mobile smartphones, it carries a significant loyalty from Windows users.

The Telecom Intelligence Group:
The Telecom Intelligence Group provides global information and professional services for the telecommunications and data networking industries, including InfoTrack market and competitive intelligence programs, tactical sales support tools, custom project consulting, multi-client studies and custom marketing programs. Our clients include leading equipment and solutions providers, network operators and end users from around the world.

The Telecom Intelligence Group includes market intelligence provider InfoTech; TelecomWeb and TelecomWeb news break; newsletters Wireless Business Forecast, Broadband Business Forecast and Telecom Policy Report; tariff consultancy Tarifica; and the Web-based business telephony product database TelecomTactics.

Contact:
Sharon Valencik, research and marketing director, 800/610-3109

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