The report identified iPad users in the SMB community—34 percent—are tech-savvy and financially successful.
As the tech world gets ready
for Apple's launch of the iPad 3, a national study of small and midsize
business (SMB) owners reveals how critical the iPad and other mobile devices
have become to this hardworking market segment. The Business Journals survey
shows that iPad use has nearly quadrupled among SMBs over the past year,
growing from 9 percent in 2010 to 34 percent in 2011, indicating that the iPad
is the fastest-growing technology among SMBs.
In addition, since the
iPad's launch in April 2010, familiarity with the product has reached
incredibly high levels in its less than two-year life span, with 75 percent of
SMB owners reporting now being "very or somewhat familiar" with the
device, according to the Business Journals study.
Godfrey Phillips, vice
president of research at The Business Journals, said that the growth of the
iPad is part of a new phenomenon overtaking the SMB market. "Our research
has shown that for SMB owners, productivity and efficiency, which used to be
the central benefits of technology, are now declining in importance compared to
accessibility, he explained. Now, it's crucial that business owners have
access to their business information and data, anytime and anywhere. The iPad,
as well as smartphones and cloud computing, are all part of this new trend and
are experiencing significant growth as a result of that need."
Similarly, the "2012 AT&T Small Business Technology Poll" shows that small
businesses continue to ratchet up their use of emerging wireless solutions,
including tablet computers, 4G devices and GPS navigation mobile apps. Despite
being a relatively new technology, approximately two-thirds (67 percent) of
small businesses surveyed indicate that they use tablet computers, up from 57
percent a year ago, according to the recent AT&T study.
The Business Journals study
shows that iPad users in the SMB community34 percentare tech-savvy and financially
successful. In addition to being highly educated (72 percent have a college
education), this segment's annual household income averages $176,000. Their
companies are also well-established, having existed for an average of 28 years
and averaging $9.2 million in annual sales.
The full Business Journals study
will be available March 31. The research findings were based on a survey of a
nationally representative sample of over 1,400 business owners, CEOs and
presidents of companies with five to 499 employees.
Nathan Eddy is Associate Editor, Midmarket, at eWEEK.com. Before joining eWEEK.com, Nate was a writer with ChannelWeb and he served as an editor at FierceMarkets. He is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.