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More enterprises willing to adopt mobile-only communications: study

Convergence & VoIP Alert By , Network World
December 02, 2011 12:15 PM ET
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VoIP, unified messaging, products and services

Network World - We observed in our newsletter a week ago that the integration of business apps on mobile devices was very important to business, but we weren't quite sure businesses were willing to "cut the cord" in favor of wireless substitution. However, based on results published this week in the BroadSoft 2011 Mobile Enterprise of the Future Survey, enterprises appear more likely to adopt mobile-only communications than we thought.

BroadSoft's survey results found that global enterprises are shifting to mobile-only communications more rapidly than expected and they are also broadly adopting unified communications services. The survey, conducted by Cohen Research Group, found that enterprises are increasingly challenged with the need to support a diverse mobile workforce using a wide range of mobile platforms -- all while expanding their unified communications features and services.

Q&A: UC will be indispensable

Out of 200 U.S. and 200 U.K. IT decision-makers surveyed (including CXOs, VPs and directors at enterprises of all sizes):

• "25% of enterprise IT decision makers believe desk phones will be replaced by mobile phones within two years, and 82% of enterprises have employees currently using mobile applications for communications and collaboration,

• 44% of enterprises surveyed have at least one-quarter of their workforce operating solely using a mobile phone, and 82% of enterprises have employees using mobile apps for communications and collaboration, and

• 30% of enterprises support tablets; 51% support BlackBerry devices, 40% support iPhones and 31% support Android phones."

When it comes to support for mobile UC, "62% are expanding their enterprise's UC capabilities, with instant messaging, web collaboration and videoconferencing were identified as the top UC services they seek to support on mobile devices over the next three years." The survey also found that 72% of IT U.S. decision-makers plan to deploy videoconferencing in the next year, compared to 56% who have plans to support videoconferencing in the U.K.

Many enterprises believe their mobile network operator (MNO) is better positioned to deliver integration of UC features than are fixed-line providers; however, UC providers like Microsoft, Google and IBM were also among the top choices to provide integrated UC.

Our thanks to BroadSoft for sharing their study's results.

Read more about voip & convergence in Network World's VoIP & Convergence section.

Steve Taylor is president of Distributed Networking Associates and publisher/editor-in-chief of Webtorials. Larry Hettick, an independent analyst and consultant, is a 30-year industry veteran. He has covered VoIP and UC at Network World for 12 years.

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