THE GROWING proliferation of mobile devices presents opportunities for the New Zealand channel to act as independent consultants, says analyst IDC.
The research organisation also says wider business can also no longer ignore the introduction of wireless technologies.
IDC held a symposium in Sydney yesterday (Tuesday August 17) aimed at educating IT executives in both Australia and New Zealand on the importance of adopting a mobile strategy.
The organisation has found that 90% of Australian firms have no mobile strategy and a similar number of Kiwi firms haven’t one either, says Catherine Bennett, director of IDC user programs in Australia and New Zealand.
The Sydney event included case study presentations and advice from IDC, Nokia, Telstra, HP, Blackberry-RIM, Symbol, Ericsson, PalmOne and Vodafone.
Bennett says the nirvana of a seamless connectivity through a single, converged device still seems unobtainable. Instead, the number of devices is proliferating and it is up to the channel to help.
Firms still need educating about the potential benefits of mobile systems as currently some organisations are even relinquishing devices after finding staff do not use them effectively.
“There is much the channel can do to help businesses understand the options available. They can act as independent consultants on what their business needs are,” she says.
Nonetheless, IDC yesterday revealed that firms on both sides of the Tasman are investing and investigating a growing range of products and services to improve their communications across the supply chain.
The organisation predicts that mobile packet data traffic, currently only 1% of total carrier revenues, will double every year until 2007.
IDC’s latest end-user ITEyewitness report, Business Benefits of Wireless Working, features case studies involving some of Australia and New Zealand’s largest companies.
The report claims insight into how organisations face top-of-mind issues surrounding the mobile enterprise. It looks at the wireless options available, the business benefits they can provide and the challenges they present, showing businesses how they can maximise their return from mobile investment.
IDC concludes Kiwi and Australian firms are embracing mobile technologies but are yet to understand how it can cut costs, generate new revenue and enhance competitive advantage.
“As the mobile worker population propagates among businesses, the demand for seamless integration of multiple devices to support working practices increases,” Bennet says.
“Across IDC’s Australian and New Zealand inter (Information Technology Experience Program) membership bases, we have found the majority of IT executives have a range of mobile workers to support.
“This not only increases the complexity of an enterprise’s IT architecture, but places additional demands on requirements to support this new breed of worker 24/7,” she adds.