Mobility is definitely one of the key themes of 2006 with many organizations putting "mobility strategies" in place this year.
The big challenge will be getting it right as it comprises a wide range of technologies from wireless handheld devices, mobile applications, wireless networks, VoIP over Wi-Fi and possibly RFID. Virtual and collaborative technologies such as presence and instant messaging, which enable remote workers to be more productive, are also critical to most mobility initiatives.
While enterprises often regard BlackBerries or Treos as status symbols, the SMB sector has always regarded such devices as hard working tools to improve productivity, which is why it is this sector that is leading the mobility charge.
As a result companies are gearing up to meet demand.
Vodafone Australia is stepping up its efforts to win more small and medium-sized business customers by launching a dedicated business channel with national reach and distribution.
The new business channel swells Vodafone's ranks of sales management professionals by more than 200. The Vodafone business consultants will focus exclusively on small office/home office (SOHO) and small-to-medium-sized enterprises, connecting new customers to voice and data services.
Heading up the division is Vodafone Australia sales general manager Bruce Goldsmith who said the company plans to invest heavily in this end of the market in coming years.
Vodafone's small business channel manager Declan O'Callaghan said the company has taken everything that we've learned internationally about mobile communications and mobile working and poured it into the current product portfolio.
Moreover, Hewlett-Packard is creating a separate unit for its handheld business within the company's Personal Systems Group (PSG) so that it can focus more on the converged handheld market.
The move allows HP to turn over financial and operational control of handhelds and PCs to each respective business unit, the company said. Handhelds had been combined with notebooks as part of the mobility business unit.
PSG will now have four main product business units: notebook computing, desktops, workstations and handhelds.