Analyst Gartner has predicted that wireless email users will top one billion by 2014, and says the commoditisation of wireless email owing to mobile support from cloud services vendors is accelerating.
Gartner predicts that worldwide wireless e-mail users will reach one billion by year-end 2014, up substantially from 80 million in early 2010 as productivity benefits gained from wireless email are driving adoption in the wider business.
Gartner research vice president Monica Basso said that “In 2010, enterprise wireless e-mail is still a priority for organizations, whose mobile workforces are up to 40 percent of the total employee base. Most midsize and large organizations in North America and Europe have deployed enterprise wireless e-mail already, but on average, for less than five percent of the workforce”
She explained that although most medium and large organisations in North America and Europe have deployed enterprise wireless email already, this is only, on average, to less than five per cent of the workforce.
According to the report, another driver for wireless email roll-outs was that such services were beginning to integrate with social networking and other collaborative tools.
By 2014, social networking services will replace email as the primary means of communication for 20% of business users.
“People increasingly want to use mobile devices for collaboration to share content, information, and experiences with their communities” Ms. Basso said. “Social paradigms are converging with e-mail, instant messaging, voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and presence, creating new collaboration styles”
Cloud e-mail and collaboration services by Microsoft, IBM, Google and other players already include mobile support, but are very early in adoption. However, Gartner predicts that adoption will grow significantly in the next three to five years. In 2009, only three percent of e-mail accounts were in the cloud but by the end of 2012, that number will increase to 10%.
“Thanks to ease of access, the cloud will generate indirect competition in the wireless e-mail software market and will transform it in the long term” Ms. Basso said. “Cloud e-mail offerings from software and service players, such as Google’s Gmail, will begin to be adopted, pulling wireless e-mail implementations into the cloud as well. Research In Motion and other wireless e-mail vendors will build partnerships with cloud providers to address their customers’ cloud strategies. Through 2012, wireless e-mail products and services will be interchangeable, shipping in large volumes at reduced prices. Wireless e-mail will be highly commoditised and on any device. This commoditisation will, in turn, drive standardization and price reductions on service bundles from mobile carriers”
Additional information regarding the wireless e-mail market is available in the Gartner reports “Collaboration and the Cloud Will Transform the Wireless E-Mail Market” on Gartner’s website.