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#e2conf: Mobility is Mission Critical

This year’s Enterprise 2.0 conference in Boston is in full swing and thus far confirming our suspicions: Mobile isn’t budging from the spotlight. “It’s been said that 2012 is the year of mobile ascendancy, as mobile devices are on track to surpass PCs in production, shipment and application development,” said Paige Finkelman, General Manager of E2, in Tuesday’s keynote.

Numerically speaking, a GigaOm Pro Survey (“The future of workplaces“) states that 38% of businesses are now using mobile phones in comparison to 26% in the previous year, and 43% of businesses plan to step up their mobile practices in the future. It is also estimated that half of corporate network devices will be mobile devices by 2015.

With growth like that the pressure is certainly on organizations of all sizes to enable mobile support, and consumers stand to witness a fairly impressive level of production in the months to come.

The Proof is in the Apps

Philip Easter, Director of Mobile Apps for American Airlines and also in Tuesday’s keynote, explained how the airline is using mobile apps to enhance customer service. Customers can now check in for flights and get flight status information all from the comfort of their own phone (or tablet). The company also plans to add a live mobile chat feature so that customers may engage with agents for flight scheduling and upgrade requests.

Meanwhile, just this week a startup called DoubleDutch debuted Pride, a mobile-only collaboration app, and ABI Research released a study which states that the number of mobile app downloads is estimated to reach 44 billion by 2016.

Never has the already-tired phrase, “there’s an app for that” felt so true.

But aside from production, it’s also about productivity. An Aberdeen survey of 240 enterprises suggests that the use of mobile apps specifically designed to help employees get their work done increased productivity by 45% and raised operational efficiency by 44%.

It’s enough to make a person forget their desktop.