iPhone CRM in 2010: Predictions

The end of 2009 is upon us, and as with every year’s end, research firms, bloggers, and others are weighing in on what they expect will be big in the future. Analyst firm IDC released a compendium of their 2010 predictions earlier this week, and it will likely not surprise most readers that one of the most noted changes will be the upsurge in mobile web usage. The projected scale of this swell, however, is unexpected: over a billion mobile users will be connected to the Internet by the end of 2010. Considering the prediction for desktop and laptop PC users is 1.3 billion users, and that mobile devices have a growth rate 2.5 times that of PCs, the consequences for mobile CRM, and iPhone CRM especially, are huge.

So why will iPhone CRM be more affected than another smartphone’s? We saw earlier this year that the iPhone App store on iTunes has some 100,000 apps offered, and IDC predicts that number will triple next year. Meanwhile, the current number of Android apps will likely quintuple (to total from 50,000-75,000), which is impressive but still doesn’t have iPhone-scale implications. IDC does predict the Android phones will pose more of a threat to the iPhone next year, but it won’t reach the same level of popularity.

Addressing the similar usage numbers between desktop PCs and mobile web, IDC predicted that while mobile devices like the iPhone won’t replace the PC, they will no longer be subservient to them. There are, of course, many iPhone CRM integrations offered by CRM vendors like Salesforce.com, Oracle, and NetSuite, but one aspect of iPhone CRM that I expect will grow is the productivity applications market.

The aforementioned CRM integrations often offer limited editing and creating capabilities, and there are a number of word processing and file sharing applications available for the iPhone. These applications—like the word processor, Documents 2 Go, and the file sharer, ezShare Pro—don’t entirely compensate for the lack of certain functionalities in existing iPhone CRM applications, but they will most certainly be useful to small business users wanting iPhone CRM, and hopefully portend the arrival of greater editing, creating, and file-sharing capabilities in future iPhone CRM applications.

Documents 2 Go Interface

Documents 2 Go Interface

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