Mobile data services gain momentum

According to IDC, the growth in mobile data usage, the proliferation of wireless local area networks (WLANs) and the booming number of personal mobile devices are combing to shape the development of mobile wireless services.

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By  Greg Wilson Published  April 13, 2003

Mobile data services are gathering momentum across Western Europe. According to IDC, the growth in mobile data usage, the proliferation of wireless local area networks (WLANs) and the booming number of personal mobile devices are combing to shape the development of mobile wireless services.

Economic decline over the past 18 months has badly the hit the transport and travel sectors, generating an inhibiting factor to IT investment. However, mobile travel solutions will continue to push their way into the market as they become more sophisticated and accepted by the user community.

“Even though the promise of mobile travel services has yet to be fulfilled, there are significant initiatives underway in Europe to promote mobile services and mobile travel solutions,” says Claudia Lonardi, senior research analyst with IDC's European Vertical Markets expertise centre.

“The growth rate of hotspots across Europe — especially in the Nordic countries — is a clear sign that an increasing number of mobile solutions for travellers will be developed in the coming years to enhance the travelling experience and improve business travellers on the road productivity,” she adds.

Organisations in the travel sector are generally implementing solutions in two main areas — firstly mobile solutions to increase customer retention, satisfaction and grow revenue and secondly, the implementation of mobile solutions to increase employee efficiency.

The rising number of travellers using a mobile device and the possibility of leveraging visitor-based networks as are making it attractive for travel organisations operating in a variety of segments — including airports, airlines, and hotels — to target users with wireless applications that meet increasing requirements for information and the ability to work while on the move.

IDC believes ICT vendors targeting travel organisations with mobile solutions should make sure they partner with the right players and offer a strong return on investment (ROI) proposition in terms of both improved internal efficiency and enhanced customer satisfaction.

In the current economic conditions, companies are highly selective when it comes to choosing on which IT projects to invest and they require a strong return on investment, says the IDC report.

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