Laptops are being sidelined by UK businesses in favour of mobile devices such as PDAs, smartphones and tablet PCs, according to an analyst white paper.
The Mobile World at Work study from technology integrator Avanade said that laptops will make up only a third of company mobile devices by 2010.
The company predicted the drop in laptop use over the next four years, despite the fact that two-thirds of firms expect to increase their spend on mobile tools.
Two-thirds of UK companies plan to increase their use of PDAs and BlackBerrys, while half intend to increase investment in 3G phones and tablets.
"Work/life flexibility and the empowerment of mobile workers are huge business issues, and it is great to see that mobile working is firmly on the IT agenda," said Steve Butcher, mobility community head at Avanade.
"We are already seeing employees using laptops as well as a more advanced mobile device, and laptops will increasingly be left in the office."
The survey found that half of the organisations believe that mobility had increased their competitive edge.
However, the biggest barriers to mobile working are security fears such as data privacy, authentication and antivirus management.
Meanwhile, analyst firm Ferris Research predicted a rise in the number of people carrying applications around on USB hard drives.
"Portable apps are typically modified versions of full desktop apps designed to be run directly from modern removable media such as USB Flash drives, portable hard disks and portable music devices," said Ben Gross, an analyst at Ferris Research.
"The applications do not need to be installed on a computer, and usually keep all of their configuration data on the removable medium."
Gross added that there is a growing number of applications available, covering areas such as email, web browsing, instant messaging, VoIP, calendars, file transfer and antivirus.
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