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49% of Small Business Owners Use Smartphones

appticity | October 22, 2010

Over the past few years, it seems that a few mobile devices have become ubiquitous among businesspeople: laptops, Bluetooth headsets, and increasingly, smartphones. The days of the pager are gone.

Small business owners seem to be outpacing the rest of America in smartphone adoption, according to a recent survey of nearly 10,000 small business owners. While only 17% of Americans own smartphones, according to a recent Forrester study, a whopping 49% of small business owners are reported to own smartphones.

Of those smartphone owners, 35% own BlackBerrys, 33% owniPhones, 25% own Androids, and 7% own Windows Mobile devices.

While the study didn’t include a comprehensive look at how small business owners are using their smartphones, we suspect that merchants are turning to mobile devices to stay on top of everyday business needs through e-mail, scheduling, and calls. We’ve heard success stories from business owners who alsotweet on the go, see the importance of location-based services, and are investing in mobile advertising.

While only 12% of respondents said that they currently market their businesses through mobile — via mobile ads and apps, for example — other reports point towards an upward trend in mobile advertising budgets. In fact, spending on mobile advertising is set to grow nearly 50% to top $1 billion in 2011, according to eMarketer.

Here’s the exact breakdown of smartphone usage among the small business owners surveyed:

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