Survey: mobile access to files is critical to small business

As companies of all sizes adopt mobile technologies, small businesses also need ways to access their own business files from a mobile phone. They say it's critical to success of their business.
Written by Sam Diaz, Inactive

Egnyte, a provider of online file server products targeted at the mainstream, wants to provide the same tools and resources the growing number of savvy small business owners that are provided to large enterprises - and that includes mobile access to their files.

Today, the company is unveiling Android and Blackberry apps to add to the iPhone app previously released. It's also releasing the findings of a survey that it commissioned that found that half of all small businesses are using mobile devices to conduct business and that the majority had been in situations where they needed access to their files while in transit. In a statement, the company said:

Egnyte’s on-demand file server enables both Mac and PC business users to have online file storage, file sharing capabilities and automatic backup in one solution. The new interfaces, which require no additional software installation on the device, leverages a mobile drive -- "m Drive" -- that lets mobile users access all of their data stored via the Egnyte file server.

Among small business owners, the Blackberry is considered to be most innovative smartphone device available today, with 48 percent of the respondents naming it. In second place was the iPhone, with 29 percent. Google's Android, which is just starting to branch out in to multiple device and carriers, were rated last with just 3 percent.

Other findings included:

  • The biggest challenge to small business owners is slow access to data while out of the office (36 percent).
  • A quarter of the small business owners surveyed are hungry for better phones with more advanced features and said they will upgrade their smartphone in the next six months.
  • Half said they use their smartphones to conduct business while 13 percent use a smartphone more than they use a computer.
  • The most important factors for a business owner's mobile strategy is access to data (68 percent) and security (56 percent).
  • 88 percent view mobile data access as critical for the success of their business.

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