Smartphone, Tablet Users Drive Print Trends in Business

Smartphone, Tablet Users Drive Print Trends in Business

Tablet SketchMobile device management (MDM) and the use of iOS and Android mobile devices may be changing the course of yet another old IT standby, suggested the results from a recent International Data Corporation (IDC) report, which surveyed smartphone and tablet users. According to the report, the increase in smartphone and tablet adoption will alter printing, scanning, document management, and print volumes over the next five years. What does this mean for managed services providers (MSPs)? We'll review the details.

MSPs can expect an increase in users printing from their smartphones and tablets, the survey revealed. IDC said the percentage of users who printed from their mobile devices increased dramatically in 2012. On the other hand, the percentage of those who do not print and do not want to print will decline from almost 50 percent in 2012 to just 25 percent in 2015. One of the factors for the potential increase over the next few years can be attributed to the rise of smartphone and tablet users understanding how to print with their devices.

Respondents indicated that while smartphones and tablets are normally for viewing materials only, printing from these devices will become more popular over time. As enterprises demand more from their employees on the road, employees will demand more from their devices. The survey reported that expanding travel demands, a need for access to color printing, and corporate requirements to print certain documents from tablets and smartphones.

The survey findings also include the following:

  • More tablet users want to print than smartphone users do, but cannot.
  • Users at large and medium companies print more applications more frequently than their small company counterparts.
  • Smartphone and tablet users are more likely than non-users to scan most applications examined.
  • Business-use smartphone/tablet users are more likely than their personal-use counterparts to print and to have an interest in printing.
The study is based on a web survey conducted from mid-October 2012 to mid-November 2012. More than 19,000 end-users in the U.S. were screened to collect incidence of tablet and smartphone use by different sizes of businesses and by consumers. Afterward, 800 were randomly selected to answer the detailed survey.

The interest in iOS and Android platforms remained stable in the fourth quarter of 2012, according to a Appcelerator/IDC quarterly report back in December. The joint survey of nearly 3,000 mobile developers revealed higher interest in developing applications for Google Android and Apple iOS operating systems, providing an interesting perspective for anyone interested in MDM.
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