Wireless email is moving from a 'nice to have' to a 'must have' application, with revenues set to grow from €1.86bn in 2007 to an estimated €6.65bn in 2012, according to new research by analyst firm Frost & Sullivan.
The report highlights that wireless email is already one of the largest segments in the mobile enterprise application market and its installed base continues to grow both with new customers and as existing ones expand their footprint.
"The business case justifying the benefits of mobile connectivity is well understood and appreciated," said Shomik Banerjee, industry analyst at Frost and Sullivan.
"Mobile connectivity not only improves flexibility, but also allows faster decision making and increases efficiency by utilising otherwise wasted time, for example when travelling. Overall, it improves the effectiveness of the user to the business."
As well as their own branded push email services, most European mobile operators have built a wireless email platform encompassing third-party vendors such as BlackBerry and Microsoft.
Furthermore, RIM partners offer the BlackBerry Internet Service feature, which allows subscribers to connect their personal email accounts to a push email service run by the operators.
While this level of choice could be seen a positive step, Frost & Sullivan found that the limited interoperability between these services is affecting market development.
Individual market participants have adopted various means to overcome these challenges, with RIM offering an end-to-end service as just one example.
Microsoft, on the other hand, is aiming to make its ActiveSync protocol the most widely used. Other providers offer abstraction through the use of middleware over a client-server model.
Frost & Sullivan said there has been a growing case for standardisation as the technology has matured and moved past the early adopter phase, but the efforts made by several stakeholders in this regard have yet to yield positive results.
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