The amount of tablets, smartphones and netbook devices set to infiltrate the enterprise this year is expected to create increased pressure on IT support costs, according to a new report.
The Deloitte Technology, Media and Telecommunications Predictions 2011 report highlights more than 50 per cent of computing devices sold globally, will be smartphones, tablets and non-PC netbooks.
It expects consumer demand for tablets to continue to remain strong, but the enterprise market will experience the fastest growth.
IT departments are set to face significantly higher costs to support a technology diverse environment, the report indicated.
“Administering a traditional PC computing ecosystem centered on a single OS can cost thousands of dollars per employee per year. Supporting five times as many operating systems is unlikely to require fewer people and less money,” the report said.
“For an enterprise, a key challenge will be deciding whether to support multiple types of tablets or standardise on a single type. Employees often prefer to choose their own devices; however, IT support costs rise with device diversity.
“Balancing the IT department’s desire for a single, cost effective solution against employees’ desire for freedom of choice will likely be just as challenging with tablets as it is with smartphones.”
Deloitte highlighted the cost of managing a mixed network of both PCs and non-PCs will be much higher for IT departments.
“Reconciling these two trends and determining the true total cost of ownership will present a significant learning curve,” it said.
Deloitte anticipates demand for these devices will lead to more service opportunities.
“Although many of these non-PC alternatives are marketed as “easy to use”, the bewildering array of hardware and app choices makes it more likely buyers will be willing to pay for help selecting the best or most industry-appropriate devices and apps – along with subsequent integration, maintenance, and support,” Deloitte said.