AT&T has released the results of a poll concerning the use of mobile technology by small businesses. The Small Business Technology Poll was a nationwide survey of small businesses with between two and 99 employees. The results show that small businesses use mobile technology heavily, and that their use is on the rise.
According to the survey, 96% of all businesses surveyed use wireless technology, with 63% answering that they despend on it to such a degree that they would not be able to survive without wireless technology. Smartphones and tablets were among the most-used devices. Smartphone use has risen to 85% of small businesses, up from 80% last year. Also, even though the tablet market is not yet two years old, tablet use by small businesses was at 67%, up from 57% last year.
Another relatively new technology is seeing fairly widespread adoption among small businesses: 4G. According to the survey, a third of all smartphones used by small businesses are 4G, with 35% of those who say they don’t have 4G phones expect to acquire them in the next year, and 54% saying they expected to do so within two years.
As you might expect, given the increasing use/popularity of smartphones and tablets, the use of mobile apps is also on the rise. Thirty percent of those surveyed said that they used mobile apps for business, which save both time and money while increasing productivity. Those who use mobile apps are becoming increasingly dependent on them – 50% said they could not survive without them. The most popular apps are GPS and mapping apps. Eighty percent of small businesses use them. Apps dealing with location-based services and social media were in second and third place, with 44% and 42%, respectively.
The data from the survey was gathered in November 2011 by polling 2,513 small businesses in 12 cities across the country. For more information about the study, check here.
What do you think? Does your small business rely on mobile technology to survive? Let us know in the comments.