It wasn't too long ago that smartphones and tablets were considered new technologies. People wondered whether they'd become widespread devices, owned by nearly everyone in the way personal computers and cell phones were.
At the start of 2013, those questions had been answered with a resounding yes. The majority of people already own mobile devices with smart capabilities, and in just a few years, nearly everyone will.
This has led to a massive influx in personal data, similar to what was brought about by the rise of the social media, cloud computing and the World Wide Web. Organizations throughout every industry are interested in that information for any number of valuable uses – to the point that smartphones and tablets have become driving forces in the growing business intelligence (BI) sector, according to a TechNavio study.
"More enterprises are adopting mobile business intelligence (BI) to strengthen their sales team and sales processes through the use of mobile BI," said a TechNavio Telecom analyst. "Sales managers or team leaders can track the sales activity of an employee and streamline the sales team as per the requirement. Thus, more organizations are adopting mobile BI for tracking their on-field sales teams, which is an emerging trend in the market."
How to leverage big mobile data
Business intelligence was once thought to be a dying technology, but a recent IDC report indicated that it's anything but. Along with cloud computing, big data and analytics comprise two of the three leaders of enterprise software expenditures, the IDC study found.
Henry Morris, senior vice president for worldwide software, services and executive advisory research at IDC, said that the "management and leveraging of information for competitive advantage is driving growth in markets associated with big data and analytics." While the report noted that social media has had an enormous factor, the growth in mobile devices has contributed as well.
But as with data analytics in general, taking full advantage of information produced on mobile devices comes down to strategy.
In a recent blog post for RCRWireless, Fergus Wills, director of product management for Openwave Mobility, suggested the key comes down to understanding exactly how consumers interact with their devices and the applications they use. As he noted, quality data analytics does more than simply store information – it helps people "to act upon it."
That means leveraging the right tools so that marketers, salespeople and any other relevant party have access to real-time analysis regarding mobile BI.