Orange launches first Business Index

The last year has seen a phenomenal rise in the use of data on mobile devices according to the inaugural Business Index from Orange. Usage is up an average of 150% on the previous year across Orange’s entire business customer base, with SMEs seeing the greatest leap, up 290%.

Business Index is a new report from Orange which provides a snapshot on business trends within the mobile market, and how data use continues to explode in businesses of all sizes.

The huge increase in mobile data usage has been driven largely by the rise in popularity of mobile email and web browsing from mobile devices, as Anthony Keyworth, director of products at Orange UK, noted: “Without a doubt, 2009 was the year of mobile email. With more smartphones on the market than ever before, accessing email and browsing the web have never been simpler. In particular, small businesses have truly embraced smartphones to help them stay in touch, whether this is in the office, out with a client or on the way home. Now, when a customer is looking for the right phone, email is at the top of their requirements. In 2010, we expect this figure to grow even more.”

In a time when the recession has led to cost cutting, it is perhaps surprising that service has been top of the agenda for business customers, rather than price.

Keyworth said: “Flexibility has been a key issue for businesses throughout the past year. Having a way of working to suit each business is important because everyone is different. Through the different solutions which Orange provides each of its business customers with, we can ensure they are given the support they deserve. Whether this is through having a dedicated account manager, being able to speak directly to the customer service team, or using the self service portal; there is support to suit every business.”

He added: “In 2009 it was email that drove the increase in mobile data usage, and while we expect this to continue to be a key driver during 2010, we are also expecting to see mobile applications for businesses continue to thrive throughout this year. We are already seeing increasing demand for solutions that allow remote workers to transmit data directly back to head office, as well as growing use of office apps and CRM solutions via smartphones.”

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