Mobility saves US small businesses more than $65B annually, says AT&T survey

Mobility is saving U.S. small business more than $65 billion per year, according to a survey of 1,042 small businesses by AT&T and the Small Business and Entrepreneurship Council.

Smartphones, which are used by 94 percent of small businesses, are saving those firms the most time and money--1.24 billion hours and $32.3 billion, respectively, per year. Tablets are saving them 754.2 million hours and $19.6 billion annually.

Mobile apps, used by more than half of small businesses, are saving those small businesses 599.5 million hours and $15.6 billion per year annually. A majority of the firms surveyed say they save individually around $6,000 per year using mobile apps.

Around 77 percent of respondents say they rely on three or more mobile apps consistently, with 5 percent using 20 or more apps. GPS/navigation and mapping apps are the most used. Other commonly used apps are remote document access, travel planning and banking/finance management.

More than nine out of 10 respondents who use mobile apps use them on their smartphone, while slightly more than half use them on their tablet.

Small business owners are reinvesting the extra time and money back into their businesses to increase sales, customer engagement and knowledge about their industries, the survey finds.

"In the current economy, mobile technologies are critical to enabling small businesses to save tremendous amounts of time and money by helping them do more with less," says Cathy Martine, AT&T president of Enterprise Business Solutions.

A study released by market research firm IDC earlier this year found that small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are embracing BYOD programs. In fact, SMBs account for the largest increase in formal BYOD program launches.

"Small businesses have seen the most growth in BYOD device uptake and have responded by implementing policies that govern how those devices are used. This is a marked change from only a year ago when close to half of small firms cited having a zero-access BYOD stance," comments Chris Chute, research director of IDC's Global SMB Cloud and Mobility Practice and an author of the study.

For more:
- check out the AT&T survey results
- see the IDC report abstract

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