IDC: Local government mobile app development to outpace federal, state in 2013

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All levels of government will accelerate mobile applications development in 2013, according to research from IDC Government Insights. However, IDC predicts that local governments will outpace federal and state government organizations next year.

In federal and state organizations, out of all new apps developed, 35 percent will be mobile, up from about 30 percent in 2012, the company predicts. Nevertheless, growth is predicted to be higher for local government, with 45 percent of all new applications being mobile, compared to 38 percent in 2012.

"These numbers represent two areas in mobile applications: citizen-facing apps and enterprise apps, each with somewhat different drivers accelerating mobile adoption," said IDC Research Director Ruthbea Clarke in a Dec. 4 webcast.

At the local level, Clarke said the main impetus comes from citizen expectations of service delivery and the ability to access and interact with government via devices. Cities are responding to meet these expectations and offer new user experiences that can actually drive economic development, she said.

On the enterprise apps side, government agencies are looking to mobility to attract and retain new talent and younger workers, as well as boost worker productivity particularly for field workers, said Clarke. Since government jobs can't compete with the private sector when it comes to salaries, agencies are pushing to make enterprise apps more accessible and work more convenient and flexible through mobile options that attract these workers, she said.

According to IDC, federal and state government in 2013 will continue to develop the majority of enterprise apps for BlackBerry, while local governments will create apps for Android devices, BlackBerry, and 25 percent for Windows devices.

"Eighty percent of state and federal governments develop on the BlackBerry platform compared to 50 percent of the private sector," said Clarke. "What we expect to see happening is local governments to be the first to look beyond BlackBerry and see more enterprise apps developed on Android, around 60 percent."

The federal government will continue have a high rate (80 to 90 percent) of use of "government-liable" devices purchased and issued to employees, a trend that Clarke expects to continue in 2013. Local government, however, has adopted a Bring Your Own Device/individual-liable devices used to access enterprise apps.

For more:
-listen to IDC webcast

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