Wednesday, 12 October 2016 11:48

Enterprise mobility market heading to $5.5 billion by decade end

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The Australian enterprise mobility market is predicted to approach $5.5 billion by 2020 as businesses invest more in mobility management tools, according to a new report from telecoms research firm Telsyte.

According to Telsyte, by the end of the decade, increasing investment by Australian businesses will see the market consisting of $1.9 billion worth of devices (smartphones and tablets), $1.2 billion worth of management tools (including MDM cross-platform device management applications) and $2.3 billion of integration and support services.

Telsyte says the market growth will be boosted by businesses moving to a mobile-first strategy and regularly supporting a workforce that is increasingly able to work from anywhere.

According to Telsyte, 34% of businesses have staff who regularly work outside the work premises; this has been a consistent trend over the past two years.

The research firm also says mobility is becoming more strategic for corporations, with C-Suite executives now in charge of mobility in 80% of organisations, up from 62% in 2014.

And, Telsyte also says that despite the rise in BYOD (bring your own device), almost 80% of business still buy some smartphones for staff, and 50% buy tablets – while almost half of all tablets purchased have cellular features given the productivity benefits from an “always-on” connection.

The two big consumer smartphone brands also dominate the enterprise, with most organisations purchasing Apple and Samsung smartphones in that order, the research reveals.

Bring your own apps (BYOA), a term which Telsyte says it coined more than four years ago, has started to gather steam in the Australian market, according to the research firm.

Telsyte notes that BYOA awareness has increased and more organisations are trying to enforce rules that stop or limit the use of consumer-grade apps for workplace use, mainly due to security fears.

But, this latest research report shows organisations’ efforts are being overwhelmed, Telsyte says.

"Despite the fears, around 10% of organisations admit they can’t control BYOA and staff use personal apps regardless of policies," Telsyte senior analyst, Rodney Gedda observes.

Gedda says around half of all businesses with more than 20 employees allow BYOA, with most citing productivity and employee demand as the main reasons, as well as lack of training needed to use apps.

"With the arrival of Facebook’s Workplace, more companies will look to enterprise applications that leverage consumer platforms to reduce training requirements and promote adoption, a trend that has been a driver of BYOA in the past."

The main personal applications used in in the workplace are email, file storage (e.g. Dropbox) and project/task management and group calendaring is also on the rise, according to Gedda, but he says the research reveals that concerns remain around data privacy and security of BYOA apps in the minds of more than a third of all chief information officers.

Telsyte estimates that almost half of all organisations in Australia now have an enterprise-grade MDM, with this expected to near 70% by 2020, and that the leading MDM vendors in Australia are BlackBerry, — following the acquisition and integration of Good Technology — IBM and Samsung in that order.

And, Telsyte says the growth in MDM is being driven by a high rate (86%) of enterprises still concerned about the security of enterprise mobility, including inadequate separation between work-related use and personal use of a device and the security of devices that have access to corporate information, but are not corporately managed.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - retired and is a "volunteer" writer for iTWire. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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