Canadian Mobile Device Preferences in 2012 Show RIM Losing Market Share
Technology is thriving in Canada. A study conducted by Ipsos Reid showed steady growth in the smartphone, tablet and eReader industries, up 13 per cent, 66 per cent and 43 per cent respectively. But what brands have Canada’s preference? Apple, BlackBerry, Kobo and more are vying for the Canadian market, hoping to control the market for better profit margins.
Smarphone ownership in Canada, which was 24 per cent in Jan 2011, was up to 34 per cent penetration of the market by August 2011, said those surveyed. Brand-wise, there were clear shifts seen in the market.
“Clear shifts in brand preference appear when we look at the brands of devices consumers are currently using,” says Mary Beth Barbour, Senior Vice President with Ipsos Reid, “And looking forward, it appears that the brand race will continue to heat up.”
Leading the smartphone market are Apple and RIM’s BlackBerry. Over the last twelve months, though, the survey found that BlackBerry’s market penetration has lessened—from 41 per cent to 33 per cent, while Apple gained in Canada—from 23 per cent to 28 per cent—while Android also saw increases from 26 per cent to 31 per cent.
“Based on the brands under consideration by those in the market to buy or replace their Smartphone in the next year, we anticipate that these shifts in brand penetration will continue,” adds Barbour. “Intentions to acquire a BlackBerry have declined by nearly one-third when compared to this time last year. Interest in Apple continues on a slight incline, while Android handsets are poised to pick up the lions-share of RIM’s losses, thanks in no small part to Samsung for which purchase intent has increased by 50% over the past 12 month period.”
RIM additionally lost out Canadian brand preference and popularity. In comparison to January 2011 where 58 per cent of respondents stated they intended to purchase a BlackBerry, 2012’s results found only 40 per cent had those intentions.
When it comes to Tablet purchases, the Apple iPad controls the market at 78 per cent.
“Following a disappointing entry to the market, RIM continues to attempt to gain traction in the market with its PlayBook, but Canadians remain wary and consideration of this brand for future Tablet purchasers holds steady at 22% - up one point from 2011,” adds Barbour. “Samsung, however, has potential for a breakaway. Though current penetration is modest at 8%, consideration of this brand by those looking to buy or replace their Tablet in the next year has increased by 81%, standing at only 14% in January 2011 rising to 26% in January 2012.”
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eReader purchases reflected a growth in popularity in Canada. Although last year, the Kobo, Amazon and Sony brands were all about even in the market, 2012 shows that Kobo has become a clear forerunner with 46 per cent penetration. Although, the Amazon Kindle still potentially has room for growth as consumers are still intending to purchase the eReader brand.
“What is more interesting is that with 53% of respondents intending to buy a Kindle, the Amazon product is more likely than Kobo to be a part of the consideration set of prospective buyers than the Kobo, now at 42%,” adds Barbour. “Though intentions do not necessarily translate into sales, the January 2012 wave of Mobil-ology shows that a battle of the brands may be in the works if Amazon is able to improve conversion.”
How changing your company's software code can prevent bias
Two-third of tech professionals believe organizations aren’t doing enough to address racial inequality. After all, many companies will just hire a DEI consultant, have a few training sessions and call it a day.
Wanting to take a unique yet impactful approach to DEI, Deltek, the leading global provider of software and solutions for project-based businesses, took a look at and removed all exclusive terminology in their software code. By removing terms such as ‘master’ and ‘blacklist’ from company coding, Deltek is working to ensure that diversity and inclusion are woven into every aspect of their organization.
Business Chief North America talks to Lisa Roberts, Senior Director of HR and Leader of Diversity & Inclusion at Deltek to find out more.
Why should businesses today care about removing company bias within their software code?
We know that words can have a profound impact on people and leave a lasting impression. Many of the words that have been used in a technology environment were created many years ago, and today those words can be harmful to our customers and employees. Businesses should use words that will leave a positive impact and help create a more inclusive culture in their organization
What impact can exclusive terms have on employees?
Exclusive terms can have a significant impact on employees. It starts with the words we use in our job postings to describe the responsibilities in the position and of course, we also see this in our software code and other areas of the business. Exclusive terminology can be hurtful, and even make employees feel unwelcome. That can impact a person’s desire to join the team, stay at a company, or ultimately decide to leave. All of these critical actions impact the bottom line to the organization.
Please explain how Deltek has removed bias terminology from its software code
Deltek’s engineering team has removed biased terminology from our products, as well as from our documentation. The terms we focused on first that were easy to identify include blacklist, whitelist, and master/slave relationships in data architecture. We have also made some progress in removing gendered language, such as changing he and she to they in some documentation, as well as heteronormative language. We see this most commonly in pick lists that ask to identify someone as your husband or wife. The work is not done, but we are proud of how far we’ve come with this exercise!
What steps is Deltek taking to ensure biased terminology doesn’t end up in its code in the future?
What we are doing at Deltek, and what other organizations can do, is to put accountability on employees to recognize when this is happening – if you see something, say something! We also listen to feedback our customers give us and have heard their feedback on this topic. Those are both very reactive things of course, but we are also proactive. We have created guidance that identifies words that are more inclusive and also just good practice for communicating in a way that includes and respects others.
What advice would you give to other HR leaders who are looking to enhance DEI efforts within company technology?
My simple advice is to start with what makes sense to your organization and culture. Doing nothing is worse than doing something. And one of the best places to start is by acknowledging this is not just an HR initiative. Every employee owns the success of D&I efforts, and employees want to help the organization be better. For example, removing bias terminology was an action initiated by our Engineering and Product Strategy teams at Deltek, not HR. You can solicit the voices of employees by asking for feedback in engagement surveys, focus groups, and town halls. We hear great recommendations from employees and take those opportunities to improve.