Perhaps no other segment of the UK labour force is more reliant on mobile technology than couriers and drivers of the 3.24 million delivery vans. In fact, a recent survey of UK delivery companies on uShip, the online transport marketplace, confirmed couriers' growing dependence on mobile phones, apps and wireless services when running their businesses: 7 in 10 conducted more business on their mobile phones in 2011 compared to 2010. Further, 55 per cent expect to increase their mobile phone usage for business in 2012.
Starting today, uShip just made that dependence easier. With the latest uShip application (or "app") for iPhone and Android smartphones, UK transporters on uShip can discover new business while on the road, no matter where they are in the UK. Based on a transporter's GPS location, active shipments nearby will be displayed. Using the touch screen app, carriers can either place a bid directly through their phones or initiate questions to customers before bidding. The free uShip app is downloadable directly from within the phone or the phone provider's online app store.
uShip's mobile study also revealed that transporters in the UK are also ahead of the game in other areas of mobile usage and adoption:
- 75 per cent purchased their current phone within the last two years (vs. 65 per cent of US transporters)
- 46 per cent have downloaded an "app" on their smartphone (vs. 33 per cent of German transporters and 16% of French transporters)
- 23 per cent use their mobile phone for social media, such as Twitter or Facebook (vs. 6 per cent of German transporters)
"Clearly, adoption of mobile technology, smartphones and applications by transporters is quickly becoming a necessity and moving into the palm of their hands," said Lupo Westerhuis, General Manager, uShip Europe. "Through uShip's mobile app, transporters now have an easier way to find business while on the road and fill the empty miles that reduce their profit margins."
The survey parallels a recent Google study that showed mobile phone users in the UK are adopting smartphones over feature phones faster than their counterparts in the US, Germany and France.
*A survey of 8508 transporters on uShip UK was conducted in December 2011, and reflects respondents' mobile usage patterns, dependencies and preferences.