As enterprises enter their second wave of eBusiness implementations, they are increasingly looking to focus their attention on mobility solutions. With well-publicized delays in next generation network roll out, wireless carriers, device and equipment manufacturers, software and application developers and professional services organizations must all be aware of the opportunities in enabling enterprise mobility in the short to medium term. In the current economic environment, technology vendors and service providers need to understand the drivers and inhibitors behind mobile solutions and how enterprise requirements differ by industry, company size and geography.
With many technology vendors and service providers targeting the mobile business opportunity, Datamonitor has placed considerable emphasis recently on analyzing the market for mobile enterprise solutions and services. This white paper examines the core aspects of a mobile business solution, including the applications, infrastructure and management required. As well as setting this emerging market in context, the paper provides an outline of Datamonitor's assessment of the opportunities for vendors by geography, vertical market and enterprise size. It is designed as both an educational document and as an introduction to Datamonitor's analysis of mobile business, which is offered in the form of market reports, executive reports and advisory services.
The mobile business solution
As Figure 1 illustrates, Datamonitor views mBusiness implementations as the next logical progression from eBusiness developments. Stated simply, as more technology-savvy enterprises enter their second wave of eBusiness implementations, they are increasingly looking to focus their attention on mobility solutions, exploring the possibilities of wireless as an additional channel into the enterprise. In addition, enterprises are also increasingly recognizing the potential for mobile solutions to optimize key business workflows.
At present, the market for mobile enterprise solutions can still be described as immature. It appears that one of the main reasons why the deployment of mobile solutions is less developed is a misunderstanding of the current capabilities of the technology. One of the key findings from a recent Datamonitor survey of large and medium-sized enterprises is that they are unwilling to invest in mobile technologies due to a concern over the maturity of the technology. With this in mind, Datamonitor makes a clear distinction between 'mobile' and 'wireless'. Whilst it may be understandable to appreciate why solutions operating in real-time over a 'wireless' network may be deferred (given the delays in next-generation network roll-out and enterprises, 'wait and see' approach to this new technology), the reasons for delaying 'mobile' solutions are less obvious. 'Mobile' disconnect solutions, which do not imply continual connectivity to a wireless network, have considerable relevance to enterprises as well as the advantage that the technology is well established.