The European Commission (EC) has urged member countries to invest more in research and development (R&D) for mobile broadband services, warning that organisations could fail to reap the benefits of remote working.
In its Mobile Broadband Services report, the EC stated that Europe lags behind other regions in R&D investment.
It claimed further research is needed to overcome possible hurdles to adoption, including a lack of interoperability between networks and devices, radio frequency spectrum policy and mobile payments.
"All stakeholders, including member states, need to address these issues together, to ensure Europe does not miss out on the benefits mobile broadband services can bring," said enterprise and information society Commissioner Erkki Liikanen.
The EC added that the growth of mobile communications is an "economic locomotive" that boosts labour efficiency in the public and private sectors.
The biggest benefits will come from productivity gains with mobile broadband services, such as 3G, Wi-Fi and WiMax, leading to a change in the way we work by linking mobile workforces to head-office business applications at high speeds, the report said.
But more investment is needed to sustain competitiveness. The challenge is to ensure services can be supplied seamlessly to various devices, making technologies and networks that carry them interoperable, Liikanen added.
Dean Murphy, head of mobility at wireless system integrator Satsuma Solutions, urged manufacturers to be aware of the challenges when integrating parts of a mobile computing project.
"Issues such as roaming and difficulty of use will slow uptake unless people have a better experience from mobile computing," he said. But he claimed investment in mobile computing is only part of the challenge.
"There is a need for cultural acceptance and for management to trust their staff's ability to work remotely," he said.
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