21 November 2011 17:33

Apple's iPhone is the top smartphone among mobile workers, coming in ahead of the struggling BlackBerry, according to a quarterly report. The iPass Global Mobile Workforce Report defines a mobile employee as any worker who uses a mobile device (including laptops, smartphones, cellphones and tablets) to access networks for work purposes.

The iPhone now holds 45% of the smartphone market share among mobile workers, up from 31% a year earlier. Last year BlackBerry -- which used to be the overwhelming favorite among professionals -- held the No. 1 spot with 35% of market share.

"BlackBerry has not really fallen from the top spot in so much as other smartphones have grown faster," the report said. BlackBerry's market share has declined slightly, to 32%.

The study also found that the median age of a mobile employee is 41, five years younger than a year earlier. Ninety-five percent of mobile workers now have smartphones, up from 85%, and of those 91% use their smartphones for work, compared with 69% a year earlier.

The so-called "consumerization of IT" continues, with fewer companies providing smartphones for their employees but allowing workers to bring in their own devices, which are then configured for work use. Fifty-eight percent of companies provision smartphones to their employees, down from nearly two-thirds a year ago.

Tablet ownership has grown to 44% of mobile employees, up from 33% in the second quarter of this year.

The iPass report was based on 2,300 responses from mobile workers at more than 1,100 businesses worldwide. Respondents were surveyed on their productivity, efficiency, work habits and how the mobile work lifestyle was affecting their health.

Nearly 6 in 10 mobile employees gave an emotional response when asked how they would feel if they went without their smartphones for a week. Among those, 40% said they would feel disoriented, 34% would feel distraught and 10% would feel lonely.

from the L.A. Times