Majority of UK firms adopting 3G

A report commissioned by reveals that more than half of businesses are using 3G services, and finds that cellular-based mobile connectivity will soon become the norm

More than half of UK businesses are using 3G mobile connectivity, a report has revealed.

Mobilising The Enterprise, which was produced for and Orange UK by the market intelligence firm Rhetorik, suggests that the use of 3G or HSPA (which is also known as 3.5G) will be the norm within two years' time.

The speeds offered by HSPA are already being enjoyed by 15 percent of respondents to Rhetorik's research. HSPA offers download speeds of at least 1.8Mbps.

Around a third of the organisations surveyed by Rhetorik are also using EDGE, an enhanced version of GPRS (2.5G), while two-thirds are using GPRS itself.

More than 30 percent of respondents said they would use more mobile applications if greater bandwidth was available and costs were to fall. The applications standing to benefit the most include mobile videoconferencing, global positioning systems (GPS), database applications, instant messaging and shared workspace applications.

The main drivers for increased speed seem to be an increasing number of mobile workers, ever-larger file sizes and a growing number of mobile applications that require greater bandwidth. Videoconferencing and collaborative applications are not currently seen as major drivers for increased speed.

Almost a third of respondents claimed that the security implications of increased mobility were a "very important" consideration, with concerns over the management and support of devices being another significant barrier to adoption.

The survey was conducted among 371 UK organisations of varying sizes, from lone workers to large corporates.