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Defining the New Mobile- Moving Beyond the Device

5/09/2014 by


Enterprise mobility has been a long sought after goal, and to date has seen success with wireless email and specialized vertical applications. For the average user though, email and web browsing defines their mobile experience. Enterprises have been holding back on mobilizing more of their apps based on a number of reasons: user experience, cost, security — to name a few. But as more companies deploy Mobile Device Management (MDM) and now Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) as part of their mobility architecture, this will drive the adoption of enterprise mobility beyond the initial stages that most organizations are today.

EMM is rapidly being adopted. According to Gartner, mobile is among the top three CIO spending priorities in 2014. A recent wave of activity — consolidation, acquisitions and IPOs — in the MDM and EMM space underscores the industry’s rapid maturation — and the new ways that organizations are now thinking about mobility. Like web browsers in the early days of the public web, MDM has moved from a category-defining solution to a utility feature of a larger, more integrated solution and the base of enterprise mobility platforms. To enable full mobile productivity, organizations now seek more complete offerings that let them flexibly leverage application and content management, secure email and productivity apps as well. On a strategic level, they now think about mobility in terms of mobile workspaces that provide access to apps, desktops, data and services anywhere, on any device, over any network — a trend with important implications for providers and customers alike.

The evolution of enterprise mobility maps to a shifting mindset among IT around mobile devices and applications. During the initial wave of enterprise mobility, IT tended to view the trend of BYOD, for example, as a problem. As consumer smartphones and tablets entered the workplace, and employees requested mobile access to corporate assets and email, IT was understandably concerned about security and manageability. The first enterprise mobility strategies were defensive in nature, allowing only a small handful of carefully managed apps for strictly limited use cases. Over time, IT had to respond effectively to a growing list of requests and requirements to prevent users from turning to unmanaged, less secure workarounds. The embrace of MDM reflected a fallback to a familiar model: IT would manage devices the same way as any other endpoint, such as a laptop or desktop computer. This did address many needs, but significant pain points remained. These challenges, and the solutions introduced to address them, have defined the current state of EMM.

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