UAE smartphone penetration ‘on par with UK’
Dubai, December 11, 2012
The smartphone penetration rate in the UAE was as high as 61.5 per cent last year, which is almost on par with the UK, a report said.
In comparison, other markets such as Turkey, the figure was 10.4 per cent, added a study from independent technology industry analysts Canalys, and conducted on behalf of Polycom, a global leader in standards-based unified communications and collaboration (UC&C).
The study focused on the region’s ICT market growth and the country variances in ICT investment.
According to the study, the installed base of smart phones in the Middle East is set to grow faster than the EMEA average at 20.5 per cent over the next five years, which is higher than the 17.5 per cent forecast in Western Europe, although penetration levels into population are already high in some countries.
However, smartphone penetration in the Middle East still has plenty of room to grow in comparison to Europe, so trends such as bring-your-own-device, which allows staff to connect their own devices to their work’s corporate networks, are far less prevalent, while security and privacy are two key issues that will hold back the adoption of cloud services in this region, the study said.
According to Canalys, the Middle East is a diverse region with a number of local variances. Markets such as the UAE, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar have a strong appetite for ICT, driven by large infrastructure projects, while Turkey’s market is being strongly driven by the SME (small to medium enterprise) segment.
However, other markets are more challenging in terms of IT investment such as Iraq, Iran, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria.
“At Polycom, we are seeing yet another year of continued strong demand for UC solutions in the Middle East as both multinational and regional businesses realise the benefits of truly interoperable, high definition quality video collaboration,” said Daniel Schmierer, Polycom’s Area Sales vice president for Middle East & Africa.
“To ensure high adoption by the users, we always tailor our solutions according to the different needs and applications of our clients. We build the appropriate overall product solution design and associated professional services to provide our customers with the best return on their investment,” he added.
The Middle East is a region that can change and evolve rapidly and will be keen to adopt advanced UC solutions such as mobile video collaboration, he said.
This is a region where mobile working is considered standard practice due to the geographic and infrastructure challenges as well as being characterised by less centralised organisations. Again privacy concerns and security will be key issues to overcome and will require a degree of localisation in approach, the study found. – TradeArabia News Service