According to one of the largest providers of hosted Microsoft Exchange services, iPhones and iPads still rule the small and midsize business (SMB) market.
Intermedia, which provides hosted email, calendars, and other business tools to nearly 700,000 business users, said that Apple accounted for six out of every eight mobile devices activated by its SMB customers, despite other studies showing Android’s overall lead in market share.
In 2013, iPhones and iPads accounted for 76 percent of all mobile device activations on its network, Intermedia said.
In its “2013 Small + Medium Business Mobile Trends Report,” Intermedia found that Samsung has established itself as the No. 2 device manufacturer among its SMB customers, exceeding activations of all other Android manufacturers, Windows Mobile devices, and BlackBerry smartphones.
“Small and medium-sized businesses are choosing Apple for mobile delivery of their cloud IT services at an incredible rate,” said Michael Gold, president of Intermedia.
“Samsung and Apple will compete intensely for these business users by driving down prices, extending functionality, and addressing SMB needs like security,” Gold added.
Additional trends detailed in Intermedia’s report include:
• Activation spikes are not tied to holiday sales. BYOD trends suggest that holiday gift giving would have a large impact on mobile device activations. However, Intermedia’s report found a far stronger correlation of activation spikes with vendor release cycles, such as Apple’s spring and fall iPhone/iPad/iOS release cycle.
• Businesses have ignored the lower-cost iPhone 5c. The iPhone 5s was activated at nearly five times the rate of the 5c in October 2013, the first full month since Apple debuted both phones.
• Even older iPhone models saw more activations than the 5c. In the same October period, iPhone 5, 4s and 4 models were all activated more than the iPhone 5c.
• While Windows smartphone and tablet activations made up only 1 percent of activations in the first ten months of 2013, they grew by roughly 93 percent over that period.
• The SMB mobile market is still expanding. Aggregate figures show that mobile device activations are rising across all manufacturers — as opposed to vendors trading share-of-activations — implying that smartphones and tablets have yet to reach full saturation in the SMB market.
The findings of this report are derived from Intermedia’s non-personally identifiable log of ActiveSync activations over time, the company said.