Android, Apple and BlackBerry devices are roughly equally represented in the workplace, says a new Forrester survey, despite Apple and Android's perceived dominance.
The tussle for dominance
between Apple iPhones and Google Android smartphones is the main story in the
consumer device space. But a new global survey from Forrester Research shows a
different story in the workplace.
When nearly 4,000
information workers were asked which operating system their work device runs,
Apple, Android and Research In Motion's BlackBerry-despite all the funeral
marches that have been played for RIM's brand of late-were shown to be used in
roughly equal numbers, according to Forrester's Forrsights Workforce and
Hardware report. Each held more or less a quarter of the overall market, with
the final quarter going to an "other" category comprised of Nokia's
Symbian, Microsoft's Windows Mobile and Windows 7, Hewlett-Packard's webOS,
Linux and Samsung's Bada.
"This data shows the
time lag in installed base users of smartphones used for work versus the story
coming out of smartphone shipment trends, which focus on the ongoing
competition between Android and Apple's iOS," Forrester analyst Frank
Gillett wrote in a Jan.
29 blog post
. "So even though BlackBerry share of sales has slipped,
it's still the smartphone used for work by 26% of information workers across
our 17-country sample, second only to Android at 27%, with Apple iOS at
Gillett pointed readers to a
Jan. 29 story in The
New York Times,
which offered an overview of a story that has been
playing out in eWEEK
and other tech
sites for some time: RIM's BlackBerry is fighting a desperate fight to retain
its business base in the United States, while being heartily embraced by
business workers in developing economies.
"Android and Apple
together are eating BlackBerry's lunch," the Times
quoted Gillett as saying.
(Perhaps it was sharing a
table with the Galaxy Tab; analytics firm Flurry
recently suggested that Amazon, with its Kindle Fire, is eating Samsung's
markets helping to keep the BlackBerry-maker afloat, RIM's co-CEOs Jim
Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis acknowledged Jan. 22 that a drastic change was
needed and announced they were ceding their shared role to COO Thorsten Heins.
newly minted CEO,
in a corporate video, said a first order of business
would be inserting more discipline into RIM's processes.
"I want to spend
more time on prototyping, on exploring, on research and development,"
Meanwhile, Apple and Android
have been playing out their tit-for-tat. During the fourth quarter of 2011,
Apple regained the role of No. 1 smartphone maker that Android-supporter
Samsung had stolen from it the quarter before. Still, Samsung took the top
prize for the full year. Growing 278 percent year-over-year, it shipped a total
of 95 million handsets, sliding past Apple's 93 million. RIM didn't make the
What will become of those
pie quarters in 2012?
Gillett, in a Jan. 26 post,
noted the increased presence of Apple products in public places and work
environments. At large infrastructure software companies he visited, he writes,
CTOs were using Macs and mocking the Windows holdouts for pecking at
Getting more formal about
it, Forrester asked 3,300 IT decision makers what they were buying and
supporting and 10,000 IT workers about what they use to get work done at home
and at work. What they found was one in five workers using one or more Apple
devices, most often the iPhone. Additionally, the workers most likely to use
Apple devices were those in the highest pay brackets and the lowest age
While non-U.S. users are
those currently helping out RIM, Forrester also found information workers in
countries outside of North America and Europe "more likely to use Apple
products for work."