Fifty Percent of Netbook Owners Use Push E-mail, Survey Finds
A study by market research
and consulting firm Techaisle found 52 percent of small business owners
employing netbooks choose computer maker Asus as the preferred brand, while
Dell and HP have higher penetration within midmarket and larger businesses. The
survey also found current and potential netbook buyers are more technologically
sophisticated than non-netbook owners and support mobility products within
Small businesses employing
netbooks not only support and use mobile applications such as direct push email
but they also have a defined policy for the use and support of smartphones, the
study found. Techaisle said the surveys were conducted across several countries
in both developed and emerging markets. The study found 46 percent of small
businesses that are "Likely to Buy" netbooks currently use push
e-mail. These small businesses are considered by Techaisle's survey standards
to be "tech savvy", using technologies such as databases, software as a service
(SaaS) and collaboration technologies.
"Given the constantly
improving capabilities of smartphones and the upcoming debut of Ultra Low
Voltage (ULV) based PCs which will bring thin and light full size notebooks to
the market, the netbook category may get squeezed", said Techaisle managing
partner Abhijeet Rane. "Techaisle believes that the misconceptions around netbook
capabilities could hurt traditional notebooks but could also help ULV PCs as
they narrow the value proposition gap with netbooks. Netbook purchase
intentions expressed by small businesses may get diluted by both ULV based
notebooks and smartphones and for the netbook category to continue it needs to
deliver a significant value proposition differential to the market.
As per the study, Asus brand,
with 52 percent penetration, is strong among small business primarily due
to early entry into the market and availability through online retailers and local
VARs and resellers. Dell and HP are stronger players with higher penetration
within midmarket and large businesses. The netbook study also found that
purchase channels are uniquely different for netbooks than those of notebooks
and desktops. The channels differ not only by the size of business but
also the brands being purchased. Small businesses in Europe have shown a
propensity to purchase through service providers, for instance.
"Savvy business buyers
are realizing the role of netbook in their IT architecture with considerable
implications for the way vendors' distribution channels and go-to-market models
should be structured", said Paolo Puppoli, EMEA region for Techaisle.
"Netbooks could also be a future device for push email and more."
Puppoli said findings of the study reinforce the perception that netbooks are penetrating the business landscape, and technologies like push e-mail will likely see expansion into the netbook business market. "This would require a back office set up that 1-19 employees may not have and other providers will have to step in with a more holistic and vertical solution thus influencing and changing the vendors' go-to-market models," he said. "There is nothing stopping a service provider in selling the devices and push-mailing to a netbook."