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Global Mobile Worker Population

Today's businesses are recognizing the growing importance of the mobile worker, who is perhaps one of the more strategic employees of an organization, and that job functionality can be enhanced by mobility for a significant portion of the workforce. As organizations continue to implement mobile solutions, IDC expects the mobile worker population to increase from more than 650 million worldwide in 2004, to more than 850 million in 2009, representing more than one-quarter of the global workforce.

Since 1999, IDC has been forecasting the mobile worker population across a variety of regions and at a country level. This study presents, for the first time, a worldwide view in five regions. Asia/Pacific (excluding Japan) currently has the largest number of mobile workers, followed by the United States and Western Europe.

The United States had the highest percentage of mobile workers in its workforce in 2004, and is expected to reach over 70 percent mobile workforce penetration by the end of the forecast period, thereby making the U.S. the most mobile-enabled workforce across the five regions. IDC segments the mobile worker population into three core categories; office-based mobile workers, non-office-based mobile workers, and home-based mobile workers.

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