We all know that Tablet usage within small businesses (1-99 employees) has been on the rise. As per several Techaisle surveys the penetration rates of Tablet adoption varies from 12 percent to over 30 percent in some countries within small businesses. Techaisle surveys also definitely show that Tablets are largely being used as add-ons to traditional PCs, however there is some incidence of notebooks in particular being replaced by tablets in mobile scenarios. While most repeat tablet purchases are intended to be add-ons to existing PCs, larger Small Businesses have expressed a desire to replace existing notebooks with these devices. This is indicative of a desire but the actual decision will likely be driven by a more logical analysis of capabilities of both devices over the near term. The use of Tablets within small businesses has spread from corner offices and executive suites to a broader adoption within rank and file workers to support line of business and productivity applications. Although the Senior Management and the Sales Executive Personnel are the prime users of Tablets, it is found that among the larger size businesses IT Departments are increasingly using Tablets as they work towards application customization and management of tablets.
Techaisle’s surveys in Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Colombia, Germany, UK, and the US show there are two clear stages of application usage within small businesses.
- Discovery stage – where only basic applications are used. Initial adopters start with Emails, Internet Search, Social Media, and Productivity applications but quickly transition to Deployment stage.
- Deployment stage – in this stage small businesses guided by enhance productivity and motivated by Tablet’s mobility start deploying business related applications.
A comparison of applications being deployed by small businesses across different countries:
Looking at the above data it becomes quite obvious that sales, collaboration, and line of business applications come to the fore-front of most small businesses for Tablet deployments.
Small businesses are giving a clear signal to ISVs that developing for Tablets better be on their product road map. Over one-third of small business using Tablets are also planning to develop custom apps for Tablets, and over three-fourth say that it is very important for ISVs to develop enterprise level applications to support Tablets.
The scenarios change slightly for Smartphone application deployment where payment processing appears more often across most countries, but that is a topic of another discussion.