A topic that appears to have dominated the media in recent weeks is mobility – not surprising, as all of the analysts proclaimed it one of the four top issues for 2013 along with Cloud, Big Data, and Social. Reason enough to think about the framework conditions…
The Starting Point
One major question that is often posed first is which mobility (or smartphone) platforms should be considered. Based on current figures from Gartner (http://www.gartner.com/newsroom/id/2573415), the proportion of new purchases in 2013 up to now show that Android is in the lead with 79%. In strong second place is iOS at 14.2%. Windows (3.3%) and BlackBerry (2.7%) are in 3rd and 4th place.
At first glance, it appears that Android is THE platform on which the most energy should be invested.
Hmm…not only because I’m personally very fond of my iPhone and admit that I have owned every previous model – but these figures simply don’t match up with my own experiences. If I were asked to give a personal estimate (based on a survey of which telephones were present at conventions, airports, meetings with customers, etc.), I would have said that iOS had a 90% share. In my opinion, the remaining 10% would be BlackBerry and Windows; Android plays almost no role in the world as I perceive it.
Whenever I discuss this theory with colleagues, I get feedback from some that this is based solely on the fact that I only see what I want to see – but I just don’t believe that.
As a result, I searched for evidence to support my theory. To this end, I developed a hypothesis that the figures from Gartner were accurate, but, of course, for ALL devices purchased: both private as well as business.
At the same time, these shares are often global, which means that all regions in the world are consolidated in these publications. Of particular interest is the fact that different regions around the world have varying buying power (or focus) and that in many regions and countries, for example, iOS devices are either not available at all or only sold by certain phone service providers.
Therefore, it is completely obvious that in areas where (and I formulate this now very carefully) price plays the decisive role in the single investment – such as for the private or less affluent segment (http://www.dazeinfo.com/2012/09/29/ios-device-owners-are-wealthier-than-android-and-rims-users-study/) – the proportion of heavily sponsored and thus significantly less costly Android devices is greater than for iOS, for example.
Small side note: I think it would be interesting to have a breakdown by smartphone / tablet model. For me, the crux of the matter is that Android is always viewed as a whole. I’d like to see how the distribution would break down if only the top models (e.g., Samsung Galaxy S4 vs. iPhone 5 vs. Lumia 1080) were compared. Here, at least, you’d be in roughly the same price segment.
Based on this information, one could understand why Gartner’s figures and my perceptions do not coincide. But is there more to it?
Yes – when one further considers both aspects above (i.e., 1. private/business, and 2. buying power) and applies this to usage patterns. Would a business and/or wealthier user use their device more intensively than members of other groups?
You bet! According to evaluations from FORTUNE analysts (http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2013/02/01/apple-android-market-share/), iOS has a traffic volume of over 60% (volume – not numbers of devices) amongst mobile devices.
This means that the absolute majority of activity on the Internet (through apps, mail, etc.) is conducted on IOS devices. IOS users use their smartphones/tablets as such – while Android users just own them – well, or just make calls with them…but that’s old school.
So much for the background…this will be important again later…
What Companies Want
When one considers the whole mobility discussion from a company’s perspective, then the following aspects are most important in my experience with customers:
- Functionality: Provides functions for employees (e.g., mail, calendar, apps, etc..)
- Security: Protection against data loss
- Cost reduction: In acquisition (CAPEX) and operation (OPEX)
- Compliance: Adheres to legal provisions (in Germany, for example, taxes, non-cash benefit, etc..)
These points are not ranked intentionally, as the priorities for these aspects can vary greatly by company and sector.
When one considers functionality as a given or requirement, then one will recognize a pattern in the other three aspects that reveals the underlying need. One can only guarantee security and compliance and reduce (operating) costs if one carefully considers device administration – and this is where the starting point EMM (Enterprise Mobility Management) comes into play.
There are a number of definitions for EMM, but I’d like to provide my own at this time:
EMM is the sum of necessary procedures and tools for an effective, efficient, secure and lawful integration of mobile end devices in a company context.
With regard to tools, topics like MDM (mobile device management) and MAM (mobile application management) naturally come into play – but I don’t want to delve further into these at this time, as there’s already enough buzz about them.
Much more important, in my opinion, is the procedure aspect: A company must consider standards, processes and regulations – which is much more critical than the selection of an MDM or MAM tool.
A few examples:
- Which business model do I want to use? (e.g., only company devices, BYOD, COPE, etc..)
- Do I want to support all platforms?
- Is there a catalogue of serviced devices?
- What is the maximum amount of time the devices should be operated?
- How do I ensure that the OS is updated? (e.g., security patches, updates)
Many of these aspects are directly related to one another or go back to market share considerations discussed in the first section, such as the question of which platforms should be supported. If one considers that in a traffic context the iOS has the largest market share, then it seems reasonable that one wouldn’t let this platform “fall through the cracks”.
Another example: With regard to security aspects (patches, updates), one must always bear in mind that there is not AN Android. As with Linux, there are a bevy of various derivatives and modifications – generally by smartphone manufacturer, but also frequently by smartphone model. Because Android devices (especially the more affordable ones) have a market life of only a few months, it may be the case that after 6 or 12 months there are no more updates for this special device. In a company context, this is a major disadvantage compared with iOS, Windows or BlackBerry!
A little background on this: Whenever I discuss this issue with customers (as with conversations about Microsoft licensing), I often hear, “that just can’t be”, “they have to change that” or “they just can’t allow that”.
But yes, they can! And why? It’s simple: because none of the large carriers for Android telephones earn their money with Android! They are hardware providers, and they earn their money selling hardware (in other words, the telephone itself). From their perspective, the “business” is finished once the telephone passes over the counter.
This is completely different with Apple and (in perspective) Microsoft. In these cases we are dealing with providers that sell the hardware, but in recent years have developed more and more into service providers. Apple earns tons of money with iTunes and the App Store, and Microsoft with XBox and the Windows Store (well, in perspective). Both have a major interest in keeping all of the devices sold updated, secure and functional for a long time in order to use the highly lucrative services provided (media, games, apps, etc.).
That is a completely different model than with Samsung or HTC, for example. It would be interesting if Google would enter the playing field with its own devices.
To this end, the manufacturers’ “remote” business models should also be considered, including the big Cloud trend, as this can’t realistically be separated from mobility – and vice-versa.
You might have noticed: EMM is a highly complex issue!
What Users Want
…not only from the user’s view: They just “want it to work” – and namely just like they envision it or how the manufacturer’s marketing has implied.
Here one can see a potentially large conflict: A company needs standards, security and a plan; the user wants the possibility to use it at any time and at any place.
In an ideal world it shouldn’t make any difference for a user whether they use their private device in a business context or use their company device to update their Facebook status. From the user perspective, this should all be possible and shouldn’t be so difficult – as they don’t have to worry about the details – that’s a job for IT.
Personally, I’m a big fan of many of these concepts, but with today’s standards I don’t see a seamless implementation as realistic. For one, many technologies in detail are not as “mature” as they might appear at first glance. Another things is that – especially in Germany – there are many legal and regulatory hurdles yet to overcome, as companies continue to push in the direction of old school company devices.
However, it is still interesting to ponder such things.
Complete Article (source-website)
Autor: Nico Luedemann
- Posted by N.Luedemann
- On 2016/03/03