Home nations embracing mobility

Home nations embracing mobility

Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are embracing new technologies like never before, which is having a positive effect on businesses operating in the nations.

New research published by Ofcom has indicated that Northern Ireland leads the way in the UK when it comes to tablet uptake, Scotland has been embracing mobile internet in greater numbers and businesses and individuals in Wales have moved further away from landlines in favour of smartphones.

Nearly a quarter of homes in Wales are now shunning traditional landlines and using only mobile phones to make and receive phone calls.

With the rise of flexible working around the UK, many of these people are also turning to the use of voice-over internet protocol (VoIP) services in a bid to continue communication with colleagues and their company while keeping bills down.

In Scotland, the proportion of people accessing the internet through their mobile devices hit 44 per cent in 2013, which represents a 13 percentage point increase on the figures from 2012.

Almost half (45 per cent) of smartphone users said they used their device and the internet to access their emails, a rise from 37 per cent last year, which again may point to the increased use of these gadgets for work-related purposes.

As the bring your own device (BYOD) trend continues to gain momentum in the UK, more and more employees are embracing the use of their tablets and smartphones for enterprise functions.

Vicki Nash, director of Ofcom Scotland, said: "It is good to see Scotland catching up in our use of communications and media. This applies to the rise in take-up of tablets, mobiles and smartphones, along with growth in the use of mobile internet."

The use of tablets has certainly increased dramatically in Northern Ireland as ownership of the devices has trebled in the last 12 months, the highest level of ownership in the UK.

Jonathan Rose, Ofcom’s Northern Ireland director, said that the "portability and quick access to the internet at home and on the move" is highly valued by users.

For businesses operating in the nations, these developments could have a significant positive impact on the way they conduct day-to-day business.