Feeds

Staying connected?

Introducing the always-on generation

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Boost IT visibility and business value

Reg Technology Panel In a recent article we reported on how social networking tools were having an increasing impact on corporate life - for better or worse! No doubt the debate will run and run, and no doubt, like so many new technologies (the Web, anyone?), we shall arrive at a happy medium where such tools become part of the business fabric.

In the meantime, there's an interesting question that comes out of the social networking. Given the increasing range of tools and technologies available to us that require some kind of internet connection, from the aforementioned to such things as blogs and email, just how important is it for us to stay connected?

According to our Reg research panel, the answer to this question is telling. Remember, we need to keep in mind the caveat that people responding to surveys about online collaboration, are potentially going to be the people who are more interested in having some kind of connection. Even so, the number is high: almost exactly 50 per cent of respondents told us they need to have some kind of connection wherever they are. Of these, nearly 20 per cent claim to need an always-on connection to support their collaboration habit. Even in the worst case scenario, in which only people that had any interest at all in online collaboration capabilities participated in the study, that's still quite a proportion.

Connectivity Requirements

There are several potential explanations for this.

Yes, it could be argued that collaboration is of direct benefit for business reasons, and therefore, this is all about people being able to do their jobs better; however, and as indicated in the last article, the evidence does suggest that much use of such tools is equally for pleasure alone (that is, if receiving an electronic message that claims to constitute a tequila sunrise can be categorised as "pleasure").

The productivity angle is worthy of debate - not least because the social aspects of the business environment are a necessary element. Anecdotal evidence suggests that home and remote workers miss out on the "watercooler" experiences of their head office colleagues, so it could be that social networking tools fill a necessary gap. Might it also be that as people become accustomed to such a diet of information, they might suffer some kind of withdrawal if it was taken away?

We don't have an answer to that question from this data set, but it's worth keeping in mind, particularly if we consider what is the constituency that is most affected. The "always-on" average might be 19 per cent but in the sub-25 age group, the figure rises to 27 per cent. Given that the figure stays pretty constant above 25, this does suggest that it is more than a factor of age; note also that the overall percentage for people that need more frequent internet access remains relatively constant across the age ranges, at about 50 per cent. Within this group we are seeing a generation forming whose habits are based on the existence of collaborative technology. Not all are choosing to adopt it, but for a growing contingent of young people certainly, switching off is not an option.®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Don't call it throttling: Ericsson 'priority' tech gives users their own slice of spectrum
Actually it's a nifty trick - at least you'll pay for what you get
Three floats Jolla in Hong Kong: Says Sailfish is '3rd option'
Network throws hat into ring with Linux-powered handsets
Fifteen zero days found in hacker router comp romp
Four routers rooted in SOHOpelessly Broken challenge
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
US TV stations bowl sueball directly at FCC's spectrum mega-sale
Broadcasters upset about coverage and cost as they shift up and down the dials
Tech city types developing 'Google Glass for the blind' app
An app and service where other people 'see' for you
Canadian ISP Shaw falls over with 'routing' sickness
How sure are you of cloud computing now?
UK mobile coverage is BETTER than EVER, networks tell Ofcom
Regulator swallows this line and parrots it back out at us. What are they playing at?
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.