Few days ago I tried to answer the question: What is the most popular mobile operating system in the enterprise? There isn't one simple answer to that question of course (although you can probably guess it's not Windows Phone 7, or webOS…).
No doubt, IT consumerization along with the BYOD trend, are reshaping enterprise mobility.
In my "real life" (unlike this "virtual" one), I am managing ClickSoftware's mobility products and development. ClickSoftware's customers are mostly large enterprise companies, with hundreds and thousands of employees, most of them mobile users. Analyzing the changes in our customers preferences, really shows the changes in enterprise mobility.
Old mobile world vs. new one:
The old mobile enterprise world was dominated by Windows and Windows Mobile, with 85% of the companies using either Windows-based tablets or Windows Mobile devices (both smartphones and rugged PDA's). This wasn't so long ago; we are talking about the years between 2007 and 2009, in which iPhones were already very popular among consumers, but not quite in the enterprise.
The new mobile enterprise world, as you can see from the charts, is completely different. While Windows remains in the area of 20-30% (mostly laptops and ToughBooks), Windows Mobile is almost gone. We still see new customers asking for Windows Mobile devices here and there (yeah, it's called Windows Embedded Handheld now…), but the numbers dropped (well… actually crushed!) from 85% to 7%.
The new leaders:
The new kids on the block, at least when talking about enterprise companies, are still iOS and Android.
In just 2 years time, iOS managed to reach 45% (of ClickSoftware joining customers) and today we see more and more organizations building their entire mobile strategy with a clear focus on iPhones and iPads.
Android has also made a solid entrance during 2011, with 24% of our new customers asking for different Android models. Those numbers, BTW, have grown since the beginning of 2012 and we definitely expect to see Android gaining some additional momentum this year despite the familiar fragmentation and security issues.
Both operating systems, provide multiple forms factors. The most popular choices are iPhone, iPad, Android tablets and Android smartphones (in that order). We haven't seen rugged Android devices being used as of yet, although there are already a few alternatives out there.
So bottom line, in 2011 (and it will be interesting to see if this trend continues in 2012) – the most popular OS (based on ClickSoftware customers) was iOS. Windows continues to be strong, along with Android, while Windows Mobile is no longer a significant player, even in areas where rugged PDA's used to be the standard for years.
There are additional trends that we have witnessed in the last year or two: a growing number of average mobile users (20% in 2 years: a natural change due to the fact there are more devices people use and more roles in the organizations that require mobile solutions), multiple devices used inside business units that in the past "dictated" one device model, and more.
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