A big war welcome back and after a really well deserved Christmas break, i’ll be back with loads of Rugged, Android articles aimed to help you choose, install and run your mobile platform.  We’re making some big changes here at the Raptor hub this year so bear with me as we get the blog and all our content generation realigned to our new business direction but one things for sure, we’ll be blogging hard to get all kinds of new content out to you.

Today, we kick off with what seems have become our customary look back at our predictions of the rugged mobile market last year.  Lets see what we got right and wrong!!

We said “Ruggedness will change”

… and we certainly saw that tipping point reached on my view over 2015 with more than 70% of our customers wanting something hybrid or smartphone-like compared to a classic legacy rugged device. We also saw a massive increase in Android demand where Android almost out stripped Windows Mobile by 2:1 for us.

We said “Niche will rule”

.. and it certainly did.  With way more devices now to choose fro than anyone can possibly understand or support effectively, we started to see suppliers shifting away from an end to end model to a more focused offering.  We certainly did here by focusing on Android and hybrid devices with a bespoke support and accessory businesses increasing 3 fold last year.

We said “familiarity will win”

… and it certainly did with more businesses choosing to opt for familiar devices, with familiar operating systems that were immediately familiar to their users.  The drive to reduce associated costs of mobile devices and understanding of how a familiar Android hybrid device can do that saw real gains last year.

We said we’d see screen convergence and …

… we did! You only have to read about the Apple story last year to see how the fall of the tablet was heavily due to the rise of the “Do it all” 5-6″ phablet screen.  Large screen smartphone devices seem to be the way forward for most people and businesses in 2015.  The demise of the tablet has definitely been a big factor throughout 2015.

We said “Too cheap devices = not good”

I think this one we got partially right.  We’ve seen a bounce back form the rock bottom cheap £100 device level but Android ONE and many customers employing BYOD strategies are still putting pressure on price of hardware.  Bottom line on this fro our perspective is, if your business cares about the support and the quality of the device then cheap = bad, if you outsource those things like everything else then cheap is good, (but it will catch up with you soon! ;-)).

We said that Apple would enter the Enterprise market

… and they did!  It wasn’t really too much of a secret as everyone seemed to know something about IBM and Apples new enterprise partnership.  However rumours were all about how this had failed until Apple revealed some sales statistics showing the made some great progress into this market.  I’ not sure who to believe, or how much value the Apple solutions bring to smaller businesses but they’re here and they’re not going anywhere for now.

We said that Microsoft would take back some market share on mobile OS

Well they did, up to about 3.8% but by the end of the year that had fallen all the way back to square one at about 1.6% once again, wiping out any progress they had made from the start of Windows Phone.  We also saw very little progress on the enterprise front with WE8.1 still a mystery to many and increased chatter about businesses not trusting the platform any longer and moving to Android.  Today Microsoft also announced that they are to focus on the supporting services to mobile rather than the OS itself so maybe that’s the final straw for them and their mobile operating systems.

So there we go, some right some wrong, in the next blog we’ll take a look at our predictions for 2016 if we dare!

About The Author

Dave's one of the founders of Raptor, his rants are memorable, his thoughts are stimulating and his heart is set on helping, entertaining and making things like mobile, Android, ruggedness, 3D printing and IOT simple.

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