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The 5 Most Popular IT Services in the UK

Whether you're a business or just an average Joe, chances are you have a computer and you use it. Not including those under 16, 87.9% of adults in the UK (that's 45.9 million people) regularly use the internet. Chances are, a good portion of those are using a computer, especially when in 2013 we used an estimated 54.5 million of them. But what exactly are the most popular IT services (paid and free)? In this article we're looking at the 5 most popular IT services in the UK, from the ever popular and growing cloud services to consumer and enterprise services. 

1. Enterprise Cloud Services (such as Microsoft Office 365)

Unsurprisingly, one of the most popular types of IT service is in the cloud and picked up by businesses. As we covered in our last blog post, the cloud computing industry has grown by 13.7% over the last year alone and is becoming ever popular in the workplace. We also found out that private cloud adoption rates in business are currently at 77%, increasing 14% from 2015. Needless to say, the cloud is big and everyone wants a slice of it these days. You may even be a part of the cloud and not even know it, that's how common it is among businesses now. There are a huge variety of cloud services, we offer many of them ourselves, including managed IT support, dedicated and VPS servers, email/web security and cloud backups (among others). 

Microsoft logo

Image credit: Edmund Tse via Flickr

By the end of 2015 and start of 2016, an eye popping 72.9% of the cloud services in use by the average business were in fact enterprise cloud services. These services accounted for a sky high 71.8% of data employees were uploading to the cloud in work time. One of the most popular applications within enterprise cloud services is Microsoft Office 365, something that we love to use ourselves. Very recently Office 365 was named the king of all productivity apps, being the most popular application by a factor of 1.3 to 1 (the second best was Salesforce). 

2. Consumer Cloud Services (such as Flickr and Outlook)

In second place we of course move away from business ever so slightly and towards consumer products and cloud services. Understandably this was going to be in the list due to us all embracing technology more and more year on year, but which companies does this include? Consumer cloud services include photo libraries such as Flickr and email applications such as Microsoft Outlook and Gmail. Interestingly these services are also embraced by businesses, an impressive 28.2% of all data companies upload to the cloud winds up in a consumer cloud service. We ourselves use Flickr for the images within our blog posts and use Microsoft Outlook for our emails, so we fully embrace consumer cloud services. 

flickr logo

Image credit: Kris Arnold via Flickr

You may be surprised to hear that on average an organisation will use over 1,000 cloud services over a year, which increases on average by 38.9% year after year. There are also a couple of services that come under this umbrella, as well as another; Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn also count as cloud consumer services (despite also being a social network). Although these services are popular, they're not always safe - social networks are a good example of this as they are open to malware and 'insider' attacks.  

3. File Sharing Services (such as Dropbox and OneDrive)

Sharing is caring, right? This kind of service is almost always used within every business environment, as we move closer towards the cloud and are taking our files that are offline and putting them online. The most popular of all of these is Dropbox, which has a staggering 500 million users who upload 1.2 billion files every day. This is followed by Google Drive and then OneDrive; these three alone dominate this market, the rest do not have consistent users or sales. Interestingly 37.2% of files that reside on these websites are shared with at least one other person, proving that the service isn't just good for sharing as it's also just great for storage.

dropbox logo

Image credit: Dropbox via Facebook

37.2% of the files that are shared are unsurprisingly shared to specific employees and 12.9% are shared to all employees. File sharing in the workplace is more than common, it's inevitable as we move closer towards cloud computing. 

4. Collaboration Services (such as Office 365 and Skype)

To put it simply, these are services that can work well with other services and collaborate to create a smooth experience for the user. For example, if you use Office 365 then you can also connect your accounts to Skype as they are made to work together in harmony. The average company uses a staggering 174 different collaboration services, each employee uses around 8 of those. Using services like these can really help when it comes to productivity, but it can also help with price as many services come in bundles or you can get discounts for using one service and requesting another. These services are much more common among businesses, especially services offered up by Microsoft. 

skype office

Image credit: Phil King via Flickr

This section of the market is dominated by 2 tech giants alone, Microsoft and Google (who own 6 of the top 10 most used collaborative applications). Office 365 is the most used, followed by Gmail and Google Apps; surprisingly Yahoo Mail sits in 5th place despite being in the news constantly for data leaks and downtime. Microsoft and Google, however, know exactly what they're doing and both are forever working hard to create new and innovative products to help users engage. 

5. Social Media Services (as such Facebook and LinkedIn)

Last but not least we have the most looked at and sought after services of all, social media. The top three services used are Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn; surprisingly other networks such as Google+, Instagram and YouTube didn't make the top 10. We all use these platforms in one way or another, whether it be for personal or business use. Within business, social media is extremely important as it is a way of people being able to get in touch with you (it's also entirely free to use and can be used to advertise your business to specific audiences). If you have a business, you should have social networks for it, people who follow brands on social media are more loyal to that brand and are more likely to recommend them to friends. 

linkedin logo

Image credit: The Bush Center via Flickr

Did you know that 1 in every 3 minutes online is dedicated to social media and messaging? It's incredible, you could be harnessing that powerful fact by being the one that's talked about. There are, as of 2016, 1.79 billion active Facebook users monthly and 79% of all internet users use Facebook. Twitter, by stark difference, only have around 317 million active users monthly and only 24% of all internet users have one. But, which one would you say is more popular? Many prefer to use Twitter for socialising online as it's short, simple and public. The statistics may be low, but that doesn't mean it has any less value.


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