Seven Key Enterprise Mobility IT Trends for 2016
Advancing technology and a shift in work habits have seen more employees working out of the office by leveraging the use of mobile devices and cloud based services to improve business tasks.
Creating solutions that map processes and increase productivity is a moving target. So what do we think will be the seven key enterprise mobility IT trends for 2016 ?
As the number of mobile users increases so does the risk of a security threat. A mobile device with access to company resources can be a key target for theft as well as cyber attacks.
If a device is lost or stolen what happens to the data stored on the device, or applications with access to company data? If that data is stolen or lost what would be the impact on the company’s reputation and how would it continue to operate?
Two years ago Gartner estimated that more than 75% of mobile applications would will fail basic security tests, there is no reason to believe that has changed
Data theft digitally can cause many problems. How are mobile users accessing data? Where is the data stored? Where are the devices used? Controlling the environment the devices can connect to and securing the channel of communication has become equally as important and securing the physical device themselves. Frost and Sullivan believes that security will be the biggest issue in the IT industry driven by rapid adoption of Cloud, Mobility and the Internet of Things.
Expect a more heightened emphasis on data protection of enterprise mobile data on devices in 2016 and beyond.
2. R.I.P. Android in the Enterprise… well not quite..
If the future of Enterprise Mobility is tablet shaped then the resurgence of Microsoft Windows may give many cause to pause as they specify Android or iOS as platforms.
We have seen Windows Phone take a real beating in the smartphone space, IDC believe that by the end of 2015 world wide share will be no more than 10.2%. Part of this is put down to the “app gap” a phenomenon where not enough apps are being developed – resulting in less take up for the OS.
Apps in the “rugged” or Enterprise area often are highly customised or built to map a specific, often still paper based process so the appeal of Microsoft as a corporate platform is still attractive. According to Strategy Analytics Windows Tablet shipments are projected to hit 49 million units in 2019, a 120 percent increase from 2015 levels.
So whilst Microsoft gets Windows 10 Mobile ready to fight Android and iOS more Enterprise clients will specify Windows 10 on an ever increasingly array of tablet devices as a preferred enterprise grade platform.
3. Line of Business Devices Still Relevant
World wide IDC believes that smartphone consumption will see it’s first “single digit” growth year in 2015.
Those of us in the enterprise space recognise that generic smartphones can offer great value for money for some projects. But it is often discovered that each organization has unique mobile worker requirements making a one sized fits all phone a tough deployment and support proposition.
LoB (Line of Business) rugged devices were in the past almost exclusively based on Windows Mobile 6.5 although now there are many Android devices available. They have been perceived as lacking in innovation, not surprising when compared to new shiney smartphones. However they can often have specific and high performance attributes built in that in the long run will enhance TCO. Features such as desk and vehicle docks, IP67 sealing, integral scanning and more robust construction plugs and sockets.
Whilst the value proposition of consumer grade devices on any OS has been enhanced by device management solutions if the unit was never designed to be used in a line of business environment in the first place it can give rise to large failure rates. Up to 50% in some studies.
LoB devices have not gone away they have just got a whole lot more relevant and less costly. Products like the new Aegex Windows Tablet aimed at the ATEX market is a case in point.
4. Enterprise Mobility Servitization
Incorporating all the elements needed for an enterprise mobility solution in one offering funding and support wrapper is not new. Servitization challenges existing thinking so that the solution is configured more around the delivery of the clients service to “its” customer.
Aston University Business School in Birmingham England think so much of this that they started a whole department built around the concept. The road to transform a business from a “manufacturer” to becoming the provider of a “service” is well explained in this video.
This approach is the norm in some industries. It is likely that that train or plane you traveled on last was not ticketed owned serviced or staffed by the brand on the outside. More likely by a facilitating organisation that focuses on the delivery of some or all of the elements to you the end user.
Cloud based apps, more flexible devices and MDM are some of the reasons we can expect mobility to be the glue that makes this initiative a reality. Look out of examples especially in scenarios where the client has high touch field based activities such as managing multiple contracts delivering field service or multi site FM.
5. Data data and even more data….
Citrix estimate that the number of mobile devices managed in the enterprise increased by 72% from 2014 to 2015 – most of them mobile
According to Gartner, by 2020, 25 billion devices will be generating data about almost every topic imaginable.
In the enterprise this sets all companies up for a significant challenge in 2016 and beyond: “How do we manage and make use of all this data coming in from location services, IoT integration with host systems etc in such a way as to convert it into a demonstrable competitive advantage”
6. Cloud Based Apps on the Device on your Choice.
What if your SME enterprise does not have access to in house IT or the budget to fund a traditional build from scratch enterprise mobility project ?
The good news for 2016 and beyond is that many businesses already have competent devices in the form of SmartPhones or Tablets. Plus more line of business apps are deliverable via the cloud on a subscription basis. This will allow businesses to run a project with reduced up front and ongoing costs that address mobile and back office productivity and deploy it with an excellent ROI.
7. Internet of Things IoT
We have heard lots about the adoption of the IoT but like RFID a few years ago can it break into the mainstream enterprise mobility sector. In 2016 the answer is…probably not.
Gartner believes that the providers of Internet of Things platforms are currently fragmented and would benefit greatly from cobbling together a better ecosystem where data is shared more broadly. 451 Research believe that at the moment a relatively small number – Nineteen percent of companies are using, planning to use or will be evaluating the use of IoT in their organisations.
A more immediate solution may well turn out to Near Field Communication (NFC) as a way of adding value in key deployment scenarios.
What sets NFC apart from typical RFID is the nature of its peer-to-peer communication feature making it able to act both as a reader and as a tag. NFC has a become more available on all manner of consumer and LoB grade devices like the T1500 making it a popular choice for contactless payment.
Have a great 2016, get in touch to arrange a webinar or meeting about your enterprise mobility project.