This could be good news for the iPad: According to International Data Corporation's (IDC) latest study, tablets are among the top IT spending priorities for 2017 in European enterprises, with sectors such as education, hospitality, government, and transport ranking them among their top three priorities.
Based on 1,500 interviews with IT and LOB decision makers in 10 vertical sectors across the U.K., France, Germany, and Sweden, IDC's Tablet in Enterprise 2.0 — The Large Opportunity study reveals that tablets are part and parcel of the mobility strategy of 60% of companies, with over two-thirds evaluating or planning to purchase slate or detachable devices in the short term, contributing to a significant increase in tablet penetration over the next three years.
The study, which analyzes businesses' device strategies and requirements in terms of hardware and software, delves into the dynamics between PCs, tablets, smartphones, and phablets, as well as new technologies such as wearables, and evaluates the opportunities that evolving IT technologies offer to companies as they transform their workplace.
According to the survey's findings, European enterprises are maturing in their approach to tablet deployments and have started to focus more on applications and business outcomes, with deployments driven by the desire to increase employees' productivity, working flexibility, and collaboration, as well as by enterprises' digital and workspace transformation strategies.
"As mobility and digital transformation strategies drive the mobilization of specific industry applications," says Marta Fiorentini, research manager, IDC EMEA Personal Computing, "companies continue to look at tablets to harness the benefits of mobile data-enabled workers, support new digital business processes, and maximize engagement with always-connected customers. Hardware is still important but applications have become crucial and a key differentiator to achieve the business objectives behind tablet deployments."
The study also shows that although the rising popularity of touch input continues to support demand for slate tablets, purchase intentions among the companies surveyed show a strong interest in hybrids (which include detachables and convertibles) driven by the productivity and content creation needs of an increasingly mobile workforce.
Hybrid devices are therefore anticipated to account for over half of the tablets that companies in the sample intend to purchase in the next few years, confirming the upward trajectory that IDC has observed in the market.