Focusing on the iPhone success misses a larger point. It is not simply the success of Apple or even Samsung, who actually has the larger global market share for smartphones (33% vs. 17%), that is the major business story. The more important story continues to be the migration from desktop devices and PCs to mobile devices and smartphones. It is still too soon to predict the death of PCs and desk phones but it is clear that businesses must develop strategies to incorporate the use of these devices into their IT infrastructures.
Service providers and channel partners in their roles as “trusted advisors” need to acknowledge the trend towards mobile and cloud computing. This trend is affecting the growth in sales of desktop phones and server infrastructures. Communications has monitored the drop in landlines for wireless for some time. However, the use of mobile devices at work has grown to such a point that some, like me, have nearly abandoned their desktop phones. Furthermore, with the growth in cloud based communications, IDC is predicting a slowing in the growth rate for sales of IP PBXs. IP communications is moving rapidly to the cloud and because of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device), plugins to seamlessly integrate devices running on iOS and Android are now a necessity. Enabling mobile devices to have the same feature set as desktop devices such as Unified Messaging and telepresence is true Fixed to Mobile Convergence.
The adoption of wireless and mobile devices by “millennials” cannot be denied as it is impossible to miss them checking text messages, Facebook and using downloaded apps continuously just about everywhere. Last week as Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer was touting the coming importance and success of the Windows 8, the photo that made the newspaper was of him and the CEO of HTC holding smartphones not standing behind a PC or laptop.
Positioning your business for continued growth requires integrating mobile devices and cloud computing solutions into your product portfolio. In the case of mobility, business is following the consumer. 234 million Americans are using mobile devices, with 110 million using smartphones according to a ComScore survey of 30,000 consumers. Smartphones are now mainstream with a national penetration of 47%.