While ten years ago many employees were still to acquire a mobile phone, as of 2012 mobile technology has become a staple in most people’s home and work lives.
More than half the British population now has a smartphone and/or media tablet, allowing them to access the internet via more advanced browsers while on the move.
And many companies have invested in mobile technology solutions on behalf of their employees – knowing that by facilitating mobile working, they may be able to reduce office overheads and potentially even move to smaller premises.
Professional demand for media tablets in particular continues to rise as the market matures.
The touchscreen slate computers have only been on the market for a couple of years – the Apple iPad launched in spring 2010 – but tablets have had a huge impact on the business landscape.
They offer greater freedom and mobility to professionals, equipping them with advanced online functionality wherever they are.
And with more businesspeople recognising the benefits of the handheld devices, it should come as little surprise that shipments and sales figures are continuing to rise.
Industry analyst IDC has upgraded its shipment forecast for the sector, based on strong, enduring demand for the mobile technology solutions.
The firm believes 107.4 million units will be shipped by manufacturers this year, up from its previous forecast of 106.1 million.
In 2013, IDC expects 142.8 million units to be shipped – up from an earlier estimate of 137.4 million units for the year.
And by 2016, the firm believes the market will have doubled in size from current levels, with 222.1 million units shipped by manufacturers.
“Demand for media tablets remains robust, and we see an increasing interest in the category from the commercial side,” said Tom Mainelli, research director for mobile connected devices at IDC.
“We expect pending new products from major players, increasingly affordable mainstream devices, and a huge marketing blitz from Microsoft around Windows 8 to drive increased consumer interest in the category through the end of the year.”