In all the big news about the impact of mobile technology on small to midsize businesses (SMBs), one item that stands out is that SMBs that adopt mobile strategies outperform those that do not. This data comes from a recent study on the mobile revolution by the Boston Consulting Group and Qualcomm. Another report from Juniper Research found that in 2014, SMBs contributed $630 billion to the growing mobile industry, which is nearly triple the number from four years prior.
That kind of growth proves that SMBs are not only adopting mobile technologies; they are relying on it to fuel their business growth and change the ways that business is done.
But the big news for mobile device companies is that SMBs are choosing Apple over other OSes and brands. Intermedia’s report on SMB mobile usage found that of the 446,752 new mobile devices activated on its network in 2014, the vast majority were Apple devices. In fact, 68 percent of those devices were iPhones and iPads compared to the 26 percent that were Android devices.
Intermedia also reported that the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus made up 32 percent of the activations within the Apple category—proving that the latest Apple offerings are again the favorites among Apple users. And only 13.7 percent of newly activated devices on Intermedia’s network were iPads, which could show a decrease in iPad usage. However, since the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus have increased in screen size, they could be considered “phablets” and may be used as both smartphones and tablets within the SMB market.
The findings that Intermedia presents seem to indicate that for small business use, Apple has become the dominant brand. Michael Gold, president of Intermedia, told Baseline that he thinks that it may be time for businesses to seriously consider what Apple has on the horizon:
"As the Apple ecosystem expands, business and IT must respond," he advises. "For example, it may be time for business leaders to consider how the Apple Watch fits into their IT strategy. Business users may soon be using it for professional purposes.”
As we sit midway through this decade, who knows what other innovations Apple may bring to the business market. And it could be that the Apple Watch will soon find its way onto the wrists of smart business owners and others within the SMB market.