Wavelink Blog

Category: Mobile Device Management

Mobile Ecosystem Predictions for the Rest of the Year

Hope you had a great 4th of July!

Now that we are half way through the year, I thought it’d be fun to throw out some predictions that I and some of my other colleagues see happening over the next six months and on.

First, expect to see continued consolidation in the MDM market, (which we have been lucky enough to participate in). This continues with companies combining their similar but disparate functionality to create more complete overall product offerings, e.g. LANDesk purchases Wavelink, and a few other notables in the fray. These consolidations along with further consolidations in the mobile device markets may muddy the MDM waters for some in the rugged space.

Under consolidation we have point 1.b. We are watching as hardware vendors consolidate their markets by purchasing other rugged vendors who also offer MDM products. As it turns out, they sometimes acquire companies with a preference for a management solution different from their own. Those who have been making a living with “special” functionality specific for their devices will end up with either some quick work to do to homogenize across their device platforms, or abandoning those special features until a later date for their acquired brand devices.

Next, I believe Microsoft Windows 8 will attempt to put a lock on the MDM market for Windows devices. Like the last time they tried this with SCMDM, they might find it difficult unless they can manage non-MS Windows devices including Android and iOS devices.

Finally, I expect to see more companies dip their toe in the water and try On Demand, cloud-based management. I am predicting they will find it to be a cost effective, refreshing change for the better. With that said, some of the more traditional in-premise wifi only devices will sadly never see the internet making this impossible. As long as there are wifi only devices, the need for “self-hosted” MDM systems will remain a requirement for management vendors.

These are only a few for you to think about, but I’d love to hear any predictions you have for the next 12-18 months! Post them in the comments below and let’s talk about them!

Tennessee, Tablets, and the DMV

Here’s one for the “Oh, now THAT’s a great idea” file. Tennessee has recently implemented tablet-based kiosks to reduce wait times in 26 of their DMV locations. Despite the “cool” factor associated with tablets, it also ensures a much smoother experience for motorists. It’s a perfect example of form meeting  function!

The Gizmodo write-up is pretty funny, but all of that aside, it’s a perfect example of the reach of the mobile ecosystem. Where else do you see that tablet kiosks could be useful?

Smartphones, Mobile Devices Transforming Corporate IT

Check out what our very own Martin Brewer had to say in Brian Winstead’s article on BYOD and how the smart device revolution will impact the Exchange and IT admins in the PC world. Martin Brewer

What it Means to Provide for the Mobile Ecosystem

Every now and then, we have the opportunity to tell new customers and/or Partners about what it means to provide solutions for the entire mobile ecosystem, and it struck me that it might make a great topic for a blog post.

When you look at our solutions, the best way to visualize the “how do they all work together?” question is to envision an enterprise within the four walls. Let’s say that the enterprise is divided into the following “sections”, all of which come with their own needs and requirements.

In every Warehouse, applications are being run for a variety of tasks. This is where we begin our circle of mobile ecosystem solutions, via Studio and TE which allow organizations to deliver the aforementioned applications to mobile assets, such as handheld computers. From there, it’s possible that some of those applications are web-based, and therefore require an Industrial Browser or Velocity to render and properly run them. For further productivity, many companies are now looking to voice-enable these very same applications, which as you’ve seen in our Goya Foods video, our Speakeasy product  does quite well.

Let’s continue to our next “section”.


Enterprise Mobile Security: Making sure IT professionals feel protected

Whether you feel that BYOD is here to stay or if you feel it’s a passing trend with a hot buzzword, the reality is that employees are using their own personal devices in the work place more and more. The bigger reality is that not all of those devices have been approved by corporate IT and therefore policies aren’t in place to keep critical data on those devices safe. In a survey by AirTight Networks 37% of people interviewed said that iPads, iPhones and Android devices were sanctioned technology in their environment. Of those same people surveyed 47% said their organizations supported applications that users were accessing. Not too bad. But when further interviewed a whopping 69% said they were concerned that employees were using mobile hotspots to bypass corporate policies and were concerned about the security of data being transmitted.

With the sheer proliferation of smart devices it isn’t hard to deduce that there are a great many people who have just added their company email to their iPhone quickly and easily and didn’t give it a second thought that these devices weren’t sanctioned or a cause for concern. Checking personal and work email on the go is common for the average employee (and with the iPhone for example you can conveniently get both with one tap). So where do organizations go? Can you force an employee to turn over their personal devices when they pay the bill? What if they pay half the bill and the company picks up the other half? As a corporate IT department can you mandate that job security is directly correlated to use of a smart device? The latter is of course extreme but when confidential information is being accessed on an employee’s personal device the loss of that device could significantly hurt an employer.

A “hope for the best” attitude isn’t proactive either. That “hope for the best” attitude was what 22% of those surveyed responded with – hopefully it isn’t an organization that stores medical information or defense information. So what can an organization do? Educating employees and communicating with employees seems elementary but makes sense. Depending on your business simply asking employees to password protect access to their smart phones is a pretty easy route to take and for those organizations who know sensitive information is being access by employees, a mobile device management software solution really eliminates risks. When BYOD’s are treated like the rest of your ruggedized devices and peripherals it makes BYOD a lot less scary.

Whether it’s a lasting trend or simply a blip until the next greatest invention, airing on the side of caution means either way your data is protected.

Strategies to Secure Your Enterprise in the New World of BYOD – Guest Blog Post!

Smartdevice Info via Web Console

The post below comes from Ashley Furness of Software Advice, discussing her recent research on “Strategies to Secure Your Enterprise in the New World of BYOD.” Hope you enjoy it!

“Hello everyone! My name is Ashley Furness and I am a marketing analyst for research firm Software Advice. I cover emerging trends in CRM, sales, marketing and help desk solutions, such as Wavelink’s Avalanche and Avalanche Remote Control. I’d like to share some research I recently completed on tips for your help desk to combat BYOD-created risks. While this list should not be considered all-encompassing, it should serve as a good starting point.

Smartdevice Info via Web Console

Smartdevice Info via Web Console

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies–or allowing employees to use personal laptops, tablets and smartphones for work-related tasks–benefits employers and users in compelling ways. Workers get to use the device they are most comfortable with, and employers reap increased productivity benefits.

But sensitive corporate data is very likely vulnerable to theft on employee-owned mobile devices.


The POS Can Be A Pain In The… To Manage

It used to be that to buy something the consumer would just walk up to the cashier to get the items scanned and then pay. With the rise of mobile it’s becoming more common for the cashier to be roaming the store in search of a customer ready to check out all in the name of streamlining the customer’s experience.

Last holiday season Urban Outfitters used more than 300 iPod Touch devices as point-of-sale (POS) systems, and anticipates in the future that 80 percent of Urban Outfitter staffers will carry them to help with transactions.

While the emergence of mobile devices as POS systems creates convenience for shoppers and employees as well as less costs going into cash register acquisitions, it spells a problem in the form of managing the devices.

Earlier this year, beauty product retailer Sephora followed Apple’s lead by ditching its traditional POSes in favor of iPod Touches. With a list of retailers implementing pilots in an effort to reduce customer wait times the worry is if those devices need to be managed, and how is that going to be done?

The trend of mobile devices replacing cash registers isn’t going to slow down anytime soon, especially if you believe Square’s report of their volume last year. Mobile Payments Today published an infographic (also posted below) centered on mobile payments and stated that a mobile device as a credit card processor as one of the second-most hyped forms of mobile payments.

Companies need to make sure a policy is in place to manage all these devices and a central location to wipe them if they turn up missing.

The most important mobile payment infographic. Ever.

The most important mobile payment infographic. Ever.

Compliments of MobilePaymentsToday.com

MAM, MDM, BYOD, MEAP… Alphabet Soup and a Dose of Confusion

I participated in a discussion of the Enterprise Mobility Group on LinkedIn (which you can link to from our discussion on our own board). It’s addressed towards CIOs, and centers around the growth of Mobile Application Management and it’s impact on Mobile Device Management. Reviewing those comments, and observing the explosive growth of LinkedIn groups targeted at “Enterprise Mobility”, I got thinking about something I’ve noticed for quite a while. 

The market specialists have always seemed very confused when it comes to device management (MDM), mobile application development, and many other areas of mobility. There has always been a tendency to lump multiple technologies together when they really should not be connected. As one example, there has been a tendency for years for media publications to lump “cell phone management” in as part of MDM. Cellular carriers and their channel have always had their own management issues. However, they’re not the same issues a WMS manager has controlling barcode scanners, mobile printers, etc. Yet most industry reports (until very recently), have tended to lump cellular phones, and a whole host of other devices all together when talking “MDM”.


Additional Considerations For Remote Service Connectivity – Don’t Forget The Device!!

Good afternoon everyone! Wanted to share something on remote service connectivity. Aberdeen Group’s research report, “The Real-Time Service Enterprise: Leveraging Remote Connectivity to Drive Service Performance,” lists the key items that differentiate Best-in-Class service providers from the Average and Laggard providers. In particular, the report points out the aggressive growth of remote connectivity technology that Best-in-Class service providers are leveraging to, A) stay better connected to their remote assets, which in turn helps them to, B) provide better customer service at lower costs.

What is interesting to note, (that is not really addressed in the report), is the additional and/or modified management requirements necessary to control all these new remotely connected technologies. In other words, it’s great to have a lot of new technology closely connecting field service to the home office in real-time. However, the emergence of these new devices and technology bring with them an added requirement for additional monitoring and management of the devices themselves (My smart-device allows the home office to monitor inventory control in real-time. But…. who’s monitoring the smart-device??).

As companies move forward with real-time, remote-management of field service assets they (and their management partners), would be well-advised to focus on remote management of the field-service technology as well. The ability to remote control into a field-service device (as an example), ensures maximum uptime and usage of that device, which only enhances the real-time aspect of the total field service.

MDM Market Report Highlights Wavelink: Guest Blog From Galvin Consulting

The post below comes from Carolyn Galvin of Galvin Consulting, and is her exclusive contribution regarding Wavelink and the recent “Key Consideration in Evaluating & Selecting a MDM Solution” study. Hope you enjoy it!

Hello everyone! My name is Carolyn Galvin and I founded the market research firm Galvin Consulting. We are a global network of analysts and researchers specializing in market research, competitive research, and customer satisfaction research. The reason I’m writing this post for you today is because we recently released our latest mobility study on the Mobile Device Management market entitled “Key Considerations in Evaluating & Selecting a MDM Solution.” Our study includes key findings from in-depth interviews with chairmen, SVPs and EVPs at top-tier MDM vendors, including Wavelink. Together, Wavelink and I thought it would be helpful to give you a flavor for what’s in the study, so let’s dive in.

The report highlights how BYOD and the Consumerization of IT have transformed the mobility market and impacted organizations’ reliance on mobile device management solutions, particularly in highly regulated industries such as healthcare and financial services, and among large organizations with geographically dispersed employee populations.