Boomers prefer PCs, but Gen Y wants smart phone

Accenture reveals stark contrasts between Baby Boomers and Generation Y in a recent survey

Issuing corporate smart phones isn't just about catering to the preferences of the next generation. As a lower-cost alternative to company laptops, mobile phones might be better suited to the current economic climate.

Global consulting firm Accenture Ltd. revealed stark contrasts between Baby Boomers and Generation Y in a recent survey that polled 3,000 adults across the U.S. on their consumer electronics preferences and habits.

According to the survey, 50 per cent of Boomers (aged 45 and up) prefer computers over all other consumer technology products, while 27 per cent prefer mobile handsets. Of the Gen Y (18 to 24 years old) users polled, 51 per cent would rather use mobile handsets and only 22 per cent prefer PCs.

"As the mobile platform evolves, it's going to become a more important terminal to the corporate network than the traditional laptop," said Kumu Puri, senior executive at Accenture's consumer technology practice.

Puri recommended enterprise IT departments start thinking about where mobile applications are going to be used. "With Gen Y, as they grow up in the workplace, it will be a lot more about the mobile platform, which is a pretty big difference from where most enterprise applications are used today," she said.

Mobile applications are already being geared towards enterprise use, according to Tim Hickernell, lead analyst at Info-Tech Research Group Inc.

While integration with mobile phones has mostly focused on personal information management (PIM) such as integrating scheduling and client data, there is a lot of movement towards enabling really functional types of transaction capabilities, said Hickernell.

"For example, ERP and CRM vendors are already extending not only their own clients but also fully functional Web clients to these phones as well for transactions to continue to be done from the field within the CRM system or various ERP systems," he said.

The ability to fully manipulate data within word processing documents, spreadsheets and presentations is "still not there yet," added Hickernell, but this is to a certain extent "ripe for change."

Enterprises already have the opportunity to issue smart phones or leverage existing devices for employees who simply need access to corporate e-mail.

"This generation in particular is more likely to actually prefer their corporate e-mail if they need it on one of these smart phones than lugging around a laptop that needs to be booted up and connected to the Internet," said Hickernell.

But issuing corporate smart phones isn't just about catering to the preferences of the next generation. As a lower-cost alternative to company laptops, mobile phones might be better suited to the current economic climate.

Join the newsletter!

Or
Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags smartphonesERPcrmgeneration ydesktop pcsbaby boomers

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jennifer Kavur

ComputerWorld Canada
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?