NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--New Cloud Computing research according to New York-based AMI-Partners shows that mobile cloud applications are set to make deep inroads into the small and medium business (“SMB”) market. The research confirms that the expansion of mobile cloud – that is, the use of mobile applications hosted by third-party providers – is being driven by the rapid growth in the number and utility of cloud applications, and by the cost savings and relative ease of use they offer. Above and beyond application provider revenues, telcos are expected to generate additional mobile data-driven revenues as well.
“Cloud services generally, and mobile cloud in particular, have immediate value for SMBs,” said Karen Nielsen, senior consultant and telecom analyst for AMI-Partners. “This is especially true for those businesses with a mobile or remote workforce aiming to reduce software expenses.” Among MBs, 84% have a mobile workforce, while 39% (over one million businesses) of SBs have a mobile workforce. Moreover, smart phone penetration is 77% among MBs and 31%, and growing, among SBs. “This implies the end market for mobile cloud is adequately saturated with devices able to run mobile cloud applications and reap the benefits of hosted mobile services,” she said.
Key applications used include mobile cloud CRM (customer relationship management), used by SMB sales staff to impact sales, improve time management, and better communicate via their smartphones. More widely, SMBs benefit from mobile cloud email (e.g., Blackberry), which is usually more dynamic than non-hosted Internet email systems and frequently less costly on a total cost of ownership (TCO) basis. SMBs are also making investments in enabling mobile access to their internal databases, inventory and related information, indicative of a broader need to have access to key data on the go. This offers a channel driven play for hosters to tap into SMBs willingness to undertake expenditures to develop mobile capabilities. While enabling mobile access to SaaS applications already in use is a given, innovative business applications that allow SMBs to bypass physical infrastructure and yet operate in a highly collaborative manner will continue driving the utility of cloud mobility.
Which applications SMBs prefer to bundle, their price sensitivity and purchase channel preferences are further explored in AMI’s upcoming Worldwide SMB Cloud Services Study. This study provides comprehensive coverage of: Platforms and Devices; IT Infrastructure Services; Business Productivity Applications; Business Management/Line of Business Applications; and Unified Communications. Research will be available later in 2010.
Interested readers may refer to “The Emerging SMB Managed IT Services Market Opportunity in North America: How Cloud Computing is Transforming the SMB IT Services Industry” for immediate information. This report provides a comprehensive overview of the rapidly evolving remote managed services market in North America from both demand-side and supply-side perspectives. The study will help business planners and marketers understand the key dynamics of this fast-growing, but still highly fragmented market in North America. It explores the emergence of new key players in the SMB IT services market, and discusses how their entry will lead to reduced opportunities for the traditional SMB channel partners.
About Access Markets International (AMI) Partners, Inc.
AMI-Partners, the leader in global ICT market intelligence and go-to-market consulting in the SMB space, has launched a groundbreaking, unique series of services focused on assessing the market opportunity for cloud offerings in the SMB market. AMI specializes in IT, Internet, telecommunications and business services strategy, venture capital, and actionable market intelligence — with a strong focus on global small and medium businesses (SMBs), and extending into large enterprises and home-based businesses. The AMI-Partners mission is to empower clients for success with the highest quality data, business strategy perspectives and “go-to-market” solutions.
AMI has helped shape the go-to-market SMB strategies of more than 150 leading IT, Internet, telecommunications and business services companies. The firm is well known for its IT and Internet adoption-based segmentation of the SMB markets; its annual retainership services based on global SMB tracking surveys in more than 25 countries; and its proprietary database of SMBs and SMB channel partners in the Americas, Europe and Asia-Pacific. The firm invests significantly in collecting survey-based information from several thousand SMBs annually, and is considered the premier source for global SMB trends and analysis.