Also on the radar for 2013 will be more demands by enterprises for buying up buckets of data from carriers to be used across many different wireless devices, Redman said. Most carriers that sell sharing plans still don't allow an open-ended data sharing plan that works like a water utility, where customers are just charged for what they use, something Redman favors.
"We're getting to the point where you can use data for all the devices you have out there, but you still have to buy 4 GB, when the 1 GB plan wasn't enough and you end up using only 3 GB," he said. "Why can't we pay for actual usage?"
Some larger enterprises do pool data with carriers for data running on specific models of devices, but not for diverse devices, such as tablets as well as smartphones. And the rates enterprises pay the carriers for data are still too high, not generally that much less than what consumers pay, Redman said.
A recent discussion by executives at AT&T and Verizon Wireless indicated they are separately considering ways for application providers to offer their wireless apps for free, but Redman said that consideration will be an involved one, since carriers have to figure out the billing process.
"Free app data uses to the end user are possible, since short messaging already can do some of that," Redman said.
What might be the biggest worry for some IT shops is how much more the next generation of workers in their businesses will favor smartphones, especially over traditional laptops. A recent poll of 1,800 Generation Y adults (from age 18 to 30) in 18 countries, found smartphones were favored about as much as laptops.
In the U.S., the survey, conducted by Cisco, found that young adults favored a smartphone by 41% over a laptop (39%) when asked, "If you had just one device to own, which would it be?"
Tablets and desktops trailed well behind, another indication of the IT manager's mobile management conundrum.
Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His email address is email@example.com.
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