Mobile Darwinism: The Future of Mobile Technology in the Workplace

The growing demand for WiFi has birthed a new reality called Mobile Darwinism. According to The iPass Global Mobile Workforce Report, technology and data consumption are rapidly evolving at a rate that makes it difficult for mobile networks to adapt. Those who fail to meet these new demands will quickly fall behind the herd.

We all know the guy in line at Starbucks checking his work email on his phone, or the businesswoman in the hotel lobby using her iPad to put the finishing touches on her report. WiFi availability is not just the norm, but is rather an expectation. In fact, mobile workers are quick to vent their negative emotions and frustration when they are unable to connect.

The increase in workload and multitasking has led to a new breed of workers who are continuously blurring the line between work and leisure when using their mobile devices. To put things in perspective, according to the iPass report, only 25% of tablet owners were supplied a tablet by their employer, yet 82% of tablet owners use their device for work. Mobile devices and social media platforms that were initially employed primarily for personal use have found a home in the corporate landscape.  92% of mobile workers expect their mobile device to be enabled for work and personal use while 67% admit to using social media for work. Smartphones and social media profiles are expected to serve as personal and work tools.

It’s no wonder that social media, which has become the second most popular method for meeting a “significant other,” has also evolved into an integral business tool. Once used as a strictly personal form of communication, social media is developing to meet more business needs.  Whether it’s used to interact with colleagues and prospects or to gather information about customers and competitors, social media is breaking into the corporate limelight as an effective communication tool.

It’s clear that technology consumption is on the rise. The interminable release of new wireless devices, such as tablets and smartphones, is a clear signal that the demand for WiFi will only grow stronger. Mobile workers are now using multiple devices to get the job done. While women rely on an average of 2.86 devices to complete their work, men admitted to using 3.54.  Without any sign of a device to meet all needs, these numbers are not expected to diminish.

Stretched across numerous devices, WiFi bandwidth struggles to meet these needs. Cellular bandwidth congestion stands to hinder the evolution of mobile bandwidth and has already seeded dissatisfaction among mobile workers who are experiencing insufficient data coverage and network speed. Unless mobile enterprises can adapt to these changes, they will fall subject to the new Mobile Darwinism only to be the forgotten dinosaurs of the tech industry. With an insatiable appetite for WiFi, can we find a way to have our cake and eat it too?

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