Push e-mail on the rise, study shows

Most U.K. organizations opt for push e-mail technology rather than downloading e-mail to phones on demand, a new survey shows.

Push e-mail is the favored means for delivering information to mobile devices, a study carried out for ZDNet UK and Orange has shown.

Push e-mail is a technology that involves a company's e-mail servers "pushing" mail to users' mobile phones as soon as it arrives, as opposed to the phones "pulling" e-mail from the servers at the user's request. According to the report, which was conducted by market intelligence firm Rhetorik, push e-mail is 50 percent more popular than pull e-mail overall--but pull e-mail is more popular in smaller organizations.

Small businesses have a higher proportion of mobile e-mail usage within their organizations, with a quarter of respondents claiming that 70 percent or more of their staff were equipped with e-mail-enabled handsets. In the large corporate sector, the proportion of respondents claiming this level of uptake was only 3 percent.

The key drivers for implementing push e-mail technology are constant accessibility of staff, constant contact between users and the office, and promoting efficient communications, according to the survey. The key barriers to adoption are a perceived lack of business need and cost issues.

In terms of which push e-mail types are being used, almost three-quarters of respondents selected RIM's BlackBerry system. Around half are using Microsoft-based systems and a third are using POP3 e-mail. Many companies are using multiple systems.

Rhetorik polled 311 enterprises of different sizes for the study, of which 84 percent were already users of mobile e-mail.

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