Small businesses are taking to emerging wireless equipment and
technology faster than ever, including use of tablets, 4G devices,
and mobile apps. Nearly all small businesses surveyed - 96% - use
wireless technology in one or more forms, with almost 2/3 saying
they could not survive, or that it would be a major challenge to
survive, without them, according to the 2012 AT&T
Small Business Technology Poll.
"More than ever, we're seeing small businesses leverage the
benefits afforded by wireless technologies, whether they be
smartphones, tablets, mobile apps, or 4G speeds," said Ebrahim
Keshavarz, AT&T vice president of Small Business Product
"There's no doubt that with 'virtual offices' and remote
workforces becoming more and more prevalent, AT&T will remain
committed to offering innovative and affordable mobility solutions,
helping small businesses reduce costs and increase productivity
over both the short- and long-term."
Zooming in on survey results across General Wireless
Technologies, Smartphones and Mobile Applications, AT&T found
General Wireless Technologies
- Nearly all small businesses (96%) surveyed use wireless
technologies in their operations, with almost two-thirds (63%)
indicating that they could not survive - or it would be a major
challenge to survive - without wireless technologies.
- More than four in 10 (43%) small businesses surveyed report all
of their employees use wireless devices or technologies to work
away from the office, a nearly 80% jump from three years ago.
- Despite being a relatively new technology, two-thirds (67%) of
small businesses surveyed indicate that they use tablet computers,
up from 57% a year ago.
- By end of 2012, some 50% of small businesses surveyed expect to
have all their employees using wireless technologies to work away
from the office.
- 85% of small businesses reported using smartphones for their
operations, up from 80% last year and more than double the usage
five years ago (42%).
- 4G Devices (delivered by LTE in select markets or HSPA+ with
enhanced backhaul where available):
- One third of smartphones used by small businesses for business
purposes are 4G.
- Nearly nine in 10 (86%) of the businesses using 4G smartphones
are satisfied with the speed.
- Of those who don't have 4G devices, more than one-third (35%)
report that they expect to purchase 4G smartphones within the next
year, and more than half (54%) within the next two years.
- 50% of small businesses indicated that touchscreen is the
predominant type of keypad in their operations, followed by
traditional QWERTY keypads at 21%.
- 21% indicated that their businesses use both types of
- Almost one-third (30%) of small businesses surveyed use mobile
apps for their business, with key reasons being to save time,
increase productivity and reduce costs.
- Mobile apps are gaining in importance for small businesses that
use them, with half (50%) saying they could not survive - or it
would be a major challenge to survive - without mobile apps, a 31%
jump over the past year.
- Of small businesses using mobile apps, GPS navigation and
mapping are by far the most popular with 80% of business owners
using them, followed by location-based services (44%) and social
media marketing (42%).