This week the mobile enterprise reveals the secret lives of business travelers, while Blackberry and iPhone jostle for position.

The Secret Lives of Business Travelers

According to a recent survey from Omni Hotels & Resorts, business travelers ranked adjusting travel plans, making dinner reservations and checking into hotels among the top "must-have" mobile applications. The survey, which asked business travelers about mobile and social application preferences and usage, found that access to these tools were an integral part of time management on the road.

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Thanks to greater wifi accessibility, workers on the go have more time to work while they travel. During traditional work hours, business travelers rely on their phones to communicate about professional matters, yet they also utilized mobile and social applications to take care of personal items, explore the local area and connect virtually with friends and family -- making these tools invaluable.

From checking sports scores to updating Facebook statuses, or looking for the nearest coffee/mobile hot spot, business travelers do more than just call home.

While not just being convenient, mobile smartphones, as this survey indicates, are necessary to upholding a certain standard of efficiency. When asked which types of services they would order using their mobile device or computer, 48% said they would order anything that would allow them to multitask while on a business trip.

Blackberry Sales Down, iPhone Popularity Increases

It’s no mystery that Apple sells a lot of iPhones. As well, we recently told you that iPhones and other apple products are becoming more popular within the enterprise. Factor in Research in Motion’s device sales for the quarter ending May 31, which were lower than anticipated -- US$ 11.2 million instead of 11.8.

Such numbers might not have meant much earlier in the year, but with sales of the iPhone 4 skyrocketing, BlackBerry may soon be edged out of the enterprise smartphone market. The threat is made all the more real because security features that were once lacking, have been beefed up in more recent versions of the iPhone.

With security features as the great equalizer, when given a choice, more than half of employees choose the iPhone over BlackBerry, or so says the staffing firm Kelly Services. Forrester Research also indicates that around 29% of IT departments now support the iPhone, up from 17% the year before. BlackBerry, however, remains the most popular, supported by some 70% of IT departments.

Such Apple interest has also extended itself to the app store. Salesforce.com, for example, has reported 500,000 mobile users with iPhone users outnumbering Blackberry users three to one.

So what exactly would more iPhones in the enterprise mean for business? For one, it may mean that mobile interfaces are given more thought when it comes to design and information architecture. It may also mean that more enterprise users who carry a blackberry for “work purposes” and play on their iPhone, may get to finally mix business with pleasure.

SharePlus for SharePoint

Speaking of mobile apps and the iPhone in the enterprise, SharePlus Office Mobile Client version 1.7 was accepted in the App Store, and is now available for download for $US 10.

What is SharePlus, you ask?

SharePlus, developed by SouthLabs, a software company based in Uruguay, allows you to browse all your corporate information easily, storing all the navigated data locally for later use, enabling offline browsing of all your office's knowledge assets, like documents, tasks, images, discussions, announcements, events, wiki pages, custom lists, etc.

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SharePlus Office Mobile Client for the iPad

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SharePlus Office Mobile Client for iPhone

Available for the iPad and iPhone, SharePlus does not require any server side components. With SharePlus Office Mobile Client, users can access their SharePoint's data from anywhere.

Features of SharePlus include:

  • Offline Browsing: navigate corporate data both online and offline
  • Views Support: browse data by view in online mode, respecting server views ordering and filtering definitions.
  • SSL Support: connect to your data in a secure way with SharePlus, to https urls, certificate enabled repositories.
  • List & Site Search: search within lists, and sites online and offline. Offline search covers all the previously browsed information.
  • SharePoint Online: connect to Windows SharePoint Services 3.0 (WSS 3), Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 (MOSS 2007), and all editions of SharePoint Online.

The 1.7 release features better integration with the outside world and an improved user experience.