More evidence that iOS is beating back Android in the enterprise

Credit: loiclemeur via Flickr

iOS gained in the enterprise in North America and Asia in the fourth quarter but it’s a three-legged race in Europe -- at least among users of Citrix’s mobility management users.

Citrix today issued a report on trends among users of its mobile management products in the fourth quarter. It’s similar to the quarterly report that Zenprise used to release, and is the first such report that Citrix is releasing since it acquired Zenprise.

The availability of the iPhone 5 and the iPad Mini seem to have driven the increase in iOS usage in North America and Asia, at the expense of Android.

In North America, iOS usage grew from 55 percent of users in the third quarter to 62 percent in the last quarter of 2012. Android shrunk from 41 percent to 35 percent at the same time. 

In Asia-Pacific, including Japan, iOS grew even faster than in North America. In the fourth quarter, iOS users made up 75 percent of Citrix customers and Android 25 percent. In the third quarter, iOS had 68 percent and Android 32 percent. The iPhone 5 started selling in some big Asian markets during the fourth quarter, including China and Korea. However, Citrix said that its Asia-Pacific numbers are skewed because it has only a small number of customers there.

Egnyte, which operates a file-sharing and storage service for enterprises, saw a similar gain by iOS in the early part of 2013.

It's clear that business users continue to prefer iOS over Android, even though Android dominates overall in the market. Citrix pointed to McAfee research that showed that 97 percent of malware detected in mobile devices were on Android, so business users may feel that iOS devices are a better bet for accessing potentially sensitive corporate documents.

European workers are spreading their dollars around a bit differently than the other regions. In the fourth quarter, iOS actually lost some market share there among Citrix customers. Forty-three percent used iOS, compared to 56 percent in the third quarter. Android gained, with 36 percent compared to 25 percent in the third quarter. Microsoft's mobile platforms (Windows Mobile and Windows Phone), which have more market share among Citrix customers in Europe than in any other region, also gained, going from 19 percent share in the third quarter to 21 percent in the fourth.

Blacklisting becoming more common

Citrix also reported that 18 percent of its customers are blacklisting apps – blocking workers from using them. That’s up 11 from percent the previous quarter.

The type of apps that are blacklisted are what you’d expect, including Angry Birds, Facebook, Dropbox, YouTube and Skype. Curiously, Evernote dropped off the blacklist list, becoming the top whitelisted app in the fourth quarter. Other whitelisted apps include Google Chrome and Adobe Reader.

The fourth quarter data didn't map exactly to the data that Zenprise used to release, so Citrix didn't say how blacklisting compared to whitelisting. In the third quarter, whitelisting was growing faster than blacklisting, both in terms of number of apps and number of Zenprise customers that were whitelisting.

While the data is just a snapshot of one company's customer base, it offers some insight into enterprise use of mobile devices and how it compares to the broader market.

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