The sick, twisted lives of mobile road warriors

'Antisocial' and 'unhygienic' are two words that come to mind after reading this survey's results

Unbelievable! A new online survey of 600 mobile users commissioned by Egnyte, a file-server remote-access vendor, reveals the ugly truth about what smartphone users do on the road.

Among the findings:

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  • Smartphone devotees confessed that no moment is too private to access data, with more than half (53 percent) admitting that they accessed data from their smartphone while in the bathroom. With Kindle and iBooks apps now available on various devices, I fear some may never come out.
  • Nearly half (41 percent) of mobile professionals confessed that they are most addicted to the Facebook app. At least they know it's a pointless addiction: Only 9 percent claimed that staying in touch via apps such as Facebook and Twitter keep them most productive when on the road.
  • Road warriors miss their files, not their bosses: 48 percent of the respondents reported that easily accessing files from a file server is what they miss most when working outside of the office (I'm a little skeptical of this stat, given that Engyte offers a mobile product for remote file access). But only 13 percent of respondents stated that they miss seeing their boss when not working in the office. And 45 percent said they don't miss anything. Ouch!
  • When road warriors are doing actual work, 36 percent said that document apps such as for working on reports and presentations keep them the most productive while on the road; only 1 percent cited finance and expense apps as the most productive. But the survey didn't say what proportion of their time is on "work." My guess is that email is the top activity, followed by socializing, mindless Web browsing, game playing, and confirming flight schedules.

I can't say any of this survey's results surprise me. But now I really don't want to pick up someone else's smartphone.

This article, "The sick, twisted lives of mobile road warriors," was originally published at Read more of Gruman et al.'s Mobile Edge blog and follow the latest developments in mobile computing at

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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