Business Mobility To Grow While The Rest Of IT Stays Flat? - InformationWeek

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Commentary
2/11/2008
04:42 PM
Stephen Wellman
Stephen Wellman
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Business Mobility To Grow While The Rest Of IT Stays Flat?

Based on the sheer volume of press releases I have received so far from the Mobile World Congress, it seems as if they should have re-named the show Mobile World Advertising Congress. Despite the deluge of new mobile advertising networks and mobile search ad solutions, there is some business mobility news coming out of Barcelona.

Based on the sheer volume of press releases I have received so far from the Mobile World Congress, it seems as if they should have re-named the show Mobile World Advertising Congress. Despite the deluge of new mobile advertising networks and mobile search ad solutions, there is some business mobility news coming out of Barcelona.While the rest of the enterprise IT projections for Europe look flat for 2008, businesses are still planning to spend heavily on mobile, at least according to the latest findings from Strategy Analytics.

2008 promises to be a strong year for European IT spending, despite the apparent sluggishness in the overall economy. "Spending on wireless solutions is expected to grow by 23% in the U.K .alone over the next two years, despite flat overall IT budgets in two-thirds of companies. In France and Germany, wireless spend per employee is expected to approach 100 euros within 2 years," said Andrew Brown, director of Wireless Enterprise Strategies, in a statement.

Wireless security and mobile applications are top of mind with IT directors in the U.K., France, and Germany. David Kerr, VP of the Strategy Analytics global wireless practice, said, "Wireless security (23%) and wireless applications (18%) are the top solutions where increased spend is expected in the next few years. However, there is also a strong focus on in-building wireless infrastructure as an area for increased spend; while remote device management is also on the radar screen with 8% planning increased wireless spend here in 2008."

Here is a look at some other key findings from Strategy Analytics' latest IT survey of the U.K., France, and Germany:

* After e-mail (54%), shared contact/address book is the second-largest base of installed wireless applications (40%)

* FIRE (Finance Insurance and Real Estate) is the leading-edge vertical, with 14% of IT spend committed to wireless solutions in 2008

* Top management most influential in over 50% of cases for deciding wireless spending. IT department most influential in 30% of cases; RIM (hardware and middleware), Microsoft (software & middleware), and Nokia (hardware) best-positioned for priority spend by business in 2008

* Fixed mobile convergence for voice is the best opportunity in medium and large business as well as FIRE, but FMC less than 3% of wireless spend in 2008

* Professional services companies expect increased deployment of wireless groupware/calendaring/scheduling in 2008

* Enhanced responsiveness to customer needs and increased employee productivity remain the table stakes drivers for wireless adoption

* Reliable solutions, security, and flexibility are the top three factors of importance for IT managers when evaluating wireless solution suppliers

What do you think? Is your company still planning to spend on mobility this year despite the economy? And if so, where will you spend your money?

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