U.S. Customers Select AT&T, Verizon, and IBM as Top 3 Ranked Vendors for Mobile Application Development and Testing Services, According to IDC Survey

FRAMINGHAM, Mass., February 6, 2012 – In a recent demand-side study involving 350 U.S. respondents, International Data Corporation (IDC) asked enterprise end users (both buyers and non-buyers) about their perceptions of vendors to effectively offer services in mobile application development (AD) and mobile testing services (for applications and devices). AT&T stood out in being perceived as a clear leader in mobile AD and testing services, Verizon and IBM ranked second and third respectively. Overall strength of brand had a significant influence on vendor selection.

For mobile application development services, key study findings include:

Need for experienced mobile user interface (UI/UX) skills is high: Attention to up-front prototyping and rapid generation of user interface (UI) mock-ups are key to understanding and validating customer mobile use cases. Of the 350 respondents, 35% highlighted this as the leading capability they are seeking from providers.

Innovation and speed to market are critical: Pressure to innovate and keep up with the rapid pace of mobile technology change will strongly influence U.S. enterprises' plans to leverage third party mobile life-cycle services. This is particularly significant for those who are planning to use providers for mobile application development over the next 12 – 24 months.

Reusable frameworks expected to lower development costs: Enterprises show marked interest in finding providers who can lower cost of development with code reusability and cross platform portability frameworks. Demand for skill sets to utilize latest development techniques across multiple mobile OS platforms is high with 35% of respondents seeing this as a primary challenge.

Monetization of the mobile channel to grow in enterprise priority: Immediate needs call for integration of mobile applications with business email and calendaring, location-based services, sales force automation, billing and payment functionality, and ERP among other critical functions.

For mobile application testing services, key study findings include:

Demand for testers with strong communication skills: Testers will play a pivotal role in mobile testing and the broader SDLC, with leadership that requires bridging business needs with technical architectures, being responsive and effective in steering toward high-value risk mitigating test planning and execution strategies.

Flexibility in packaging enterprise mobile testing services: Survey results show that nearly 40% of enterprises are seeking bundled combinations of mobile application development integration and testing services.

Industrialized text execution services critical: Leveraging third party expertise and platform assets to validate mobile application functional, performance, and security requirements is top of mind for enterprises (33% of sample). Automated approaches to validating multi-touch, gesture-based applications with precision, along with voice recognition and incoming, 3D navigation is complex and expected to tax even the more advanced enterprise organizations.

Findings also indicate that provider brand positioning will influence enterprise adoption behavior across the continuum of mobile life-cycle services. Other vendors who placed within the top ten by company size or select industry categories across both reports included Accenture, Appirio, Aricent, Atos Origin (Siemens), Capgemini/Sogeti, CGI, Cognizant, Compuware (Gomez), CSC, Dell, Deloitte, Fujitsu, Globant, HP Enterprise Services, iGate Patni, Infosys, ITC Infotech, Keynote Device Anywhere, Lockheed Martin, Logica, Mahindra IT and Business Services, Motorola, MindTree, Neoris, Northrop Grumman, Polaris, SOASTA, Sprint, Symphony, Tata Consultancy Services, Unisys, and Wipro.

According to Rona Shuchat, director, Application Development, Testing and Management Services, "Success as a provider of discrete or bundled mobile application development and/or testing services will require players to highlight a combination of their technical and business competencies and experience in highly iterative mobile prototyping and validation, as well as availability of end-to-end mobile life-cycle services. Enterprise customers are challenged by the rapid pace of and investment required in mobile technology platforms, and many plan to leverage a range of professional project or fully outsourced mobile application services."

The IDC studies, Brand Recognition: U.S. Companies Rank AT&T, Verizon, and IBM as Top 3 Vendors for Mobile Application Development Services (IDC #232671) and Brand Recognition: U.S. Companies Rank AT&T, Verizon, and IBM as Top 3 Vendors for Mobile Application Testing Services (IDC #232681) highlight demand-side results of customer perception of top-ranked providers in the categories of mobile application development and testing services. In this research, vendors are given not only a framework of those players that appear to have competitive advantage as related to customer perception in this area but also key third-party capabilities that enterprises think are most important in developing and testing mobile applications and devices.

About IDC

International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community, to make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1,000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries. For more than 47 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. You can learn more about IDC by visiting www.idc.com.