Seventy one per cent of firms provide smartphones to staff

By Danny Palmer
20 Aug 2012 View Comments
An Apple iPhone 4s

Just one quarter of respondents who can request a tablet say employers give the option of using an Android-run device. And while BlackBerrys may be the most common smartphone on offer, Computing's research suggests just five per cent of organisations that provide tablets offer a RIM device to employees. RIM's BlackBerry PlayBook tablet simply never managed to establish itself in either the business or personal spheres in the same way as its phones did.

Further reading

Twelve per cent of companies that offer tablets to staff currently give the option of Windows devices. If the survey results are representative, Microsoft could potentially almost double its share of the tablet market following the release of the Surface tablet in October, with 10 per cent of respondents willing to consider switching to Windows after the new OS becomes available.

While some analysts predict Surface will struggle - comparing it to Microsoft's failed Zune music player - with a price rumoured to be as low as $199 or about £127 (in the US at least), it's certainly feasible that some companies will give it serious consideration for business, especially in light of the cross-device functionality being promoted by Microsoft as an advantage of Windows 8.

While almost 30 per cent of employers don't offer smartphones to any staff members, and the majority do not provide tablet computers, staff are increasingly using their own tablet computers in the workplace as the bring your own device (BYOD) trend gathers momentum, and this is the environment in which the Surface and Windows smartphones will be operating and on which Microsoft has firmly fixed its attention.

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