A report from telecoms analyst Ovum has predicted that smartphones will rise at a compound annual growth rate of 24.9 per cent for the period 2011-2017. This acceleration in smartphone take up compares to a 6.3 per cent increase in the overall market for mobile handsets over the same period. There are expected to be 1.7 billion smartphones worldwide by 2017.
Essentially, the report highlights the increasing consumer demand for web-ready smartphones such as the iPhone, compared to the falling popularity in ‘standard’ feature models.
The research from the company also shed some light into the popularity of specific operating systems; Android will make up 48 per cent of the market by 2017, while iOS, the platform for Apple handsets, will hold 27 per cent. In the same year, Windows Phone will hold 13 per cent, while Blackberry will account for 10 per cent.
But, while it’s always fascinating to see which platform will triumph in the race for the smartphone market, our interest in this study from Ovum is focused on the increase in smartphone ownership and its impact on customer management CRM systems. Here at numero, we’re keen to examine the future of the customer service experience – Facebook, Twitter and mobile – and how companies can begin to future-proof their customer relationship channels.
We’re already beginning to see strides made by businesses in mCommerce; steps to take advantage of the growing smartphone market. And, just as email customer service became a priority for customer management teams over the last decade, we predict more businesses will take steps to incorporate the mobile contact channel into their customer relationship platforms.
But why is this necessary?
The mobile platform blurs the boundaries of customer service. Internet-enabled smartphones allow consumers to contact businesses on the go, tweet companies from their mobile and email an enquiry as soon as the inclination strikes them. As we continue to see the smartphone market grow, we predict that companies that meet these opportunities head on will be in the best position to take advantage of this developing trend and evolve their complaint and customer management crm systems accordingly.