Mobile Device Management Must Evolve with the Market
November 08, 2011
By Susan J. Campbell
, TMCnet Contributing Editor
A quick glance around the local coffee shop or Wi-Fi-enabled restaurant and you’ll see how much mobile devices have become ingrained in society. This is true not just for the consumer, but also the business professional. As the enterprise continues to support the mobile employee and the necessary communication channels, the demand for mobile device management grows.
A recent eSecurity Planet report highlighted just how fast the mobile device management market is growing. According to Forrester (News - Alert) Research, the firm revised its predictions for this market by 2015, from $3.9 billion to $6.6 billion, a significant change.
This increase was driven mainly by the shift from a mobile device management environment completed with a high level of security, to building mobile app stores and managing the growing variety of apps and data on the mounting volume of smartphones and tablets. Mobile device management in the enterprise is also being driven by the growing focus on bring your own device policies.
Gartner (News - Alert) research vice president Phillip Redman shared that most employees understand there is a tradeoff between choosing their own mobile device and allowing their employer to access data on that device. Mobile device management is necessary to define how every piece of data should be treated according to the type of data and the necessary security.
Redman suggests that before selecting a mobile device management solution, companies should first define their priorities according to their individual needs today and forecasted needs in the future. IDC (News - Alert) Senior Analyst Stacy Crook highlighted that the organization seeking to implement a mobile device management platform must be able to complete configuration, remote wipe, inventory management, remote lock and more. A provider is needed that can support different policies for corporate devices versus employee-liable devices.
Crook also noted providers should be able to integrate with back-end directory systems to provide users with different access to different applications, and leverage mobile device management through a system that is already deployed. Companies are increasingly thinking about identity, authentication and access management, highlighting the need for a mobile device management provider focused on compliance management.
The more important point in mobile device management may actually be the change in the relationship between IT and end-users, as it has become much more complex. The relationship has become a partnership as both sides must be able to do their job in which the end-user carries a certain level of responsibility, while IT must provide the end-user with notifications and information.
Today’s market demands more than just access to mobile apps and e-mail on mobile devices. Providers focused on mobile device management must not only meet the needs of today, but also be scalable and flexible to change with the market. At the same time, mobile device management solutions must be able to support the trend toward cloud-based solutions. Forward-thinking providers are embracing these new trends to enable mobile device management for the long-term.
Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Jamie Epstein