In the ever-changing world of technology, organizations need to be incredibly flexible to keep up. You have to be careful not to lock yourself into something that could become obsolete or force you to accept constraints that could become problematic. That's what makes the cloud so attractive: your company simply does what it does best, and all the technical considerations are handled by somebody else.
I had the privilege last week of hosting a webinar with Andrew Borg from Aberdeen Research. In the webinar, Andrew presented findings published in their recently released research report Enterprise Mobility Management 2011: Mobility Becomes Core IT. You can view the webinar here or download the full Aberdeen research report here. As Andrew and I prepared for the webinar early last week we had some animated conversations regarding a few of the more surprising findings from the webinar. I thought I would share one here.
Mobility has become a top priority for IT and business leaders among organizations of all sizes, driven by the increased pressure to improve productivity across a broadening mobile workforce, the desire to become more operationally efficient, and the need to support the proliferation of smartphones and tablets in the workplace.
I had the pleasure of spending time at the 2011 CTIA Wireless conference in sunny Orlando, FL, last week. It could not have been a better location for someone stationed in the Northeast. While down there, I took part in several analyst briefings, the ShowStoppers event, the MobileTrax Innovators dinner, and business meetings with customers and partners attending the show. If you are a person interested in how your home and car are becoming integrated with the Internet, in software applications and in smartphones…then this was a cool show. You may have also had fun with all the device and accessory companies selling Hello Kitty cases for your new Android device.
Exchange ActiveSync is great for "push" email synchronization with mobile devices, but as a mobile device management platform it has serious architectural and administrative limitations that leave you exposed to significant security risks. To illustrate the point, let's examine how many company’s enable access to Exchange from mobile devices.
When most people think of industries where mobile device management and security is important, financial services and healthcare immediately come to mind. While the education field is often overlooked, there is a great deal of confidential information on university servers, including financial data, student grades, medical information and much more. In addition to the need for compliance with university privacy policies, higher educational institutions are also required to comply with PCI DSS security standards for electronic payments and sometimes with HIPAA regulations as well.
As you develop your mobility strategy, start thinking about security, and begin the process of evaluating Mobile Device Management solutions (and who isn’t at the moment), it’s easy to get lost in the weeds, spending time talking about features, functionality, life cycle management and device support. Every once in a while, it makes sense to pause and remember what the primary goals of Mobile Device Management are.
The Nielsen Company recently released metrics about consumer marketshare by operating system for smartphones in the US. I’m not sure why some people are surprised by these numbers however, I don’t think the division of marketshare is the key story. If you are wondering what they looked like, you can see the report here: Nielsen Report. For the record, the top 3 are Android (29%), Apple (27%) and RIM (27%). Behind these numbers is something bigger, with greater impact on all companies regardless if they are supplying smartphones to their workers or if they allow workers to bring in their personal devices.
It’s been a few days since the RSA Conference and I’ve had time to absorb everything that was there. With the sessions, keynote addresses, vendor floor and the socializing, the whole conference was definitely something worth experiencing. The conference had more than 320 companies exhibiting their tools and technologies, over 255 sessions and 540 speakers.