In my travels I have become quite dependant on my mobile devices. Whether Im in a taxi, on the runway or waiting for someone it seems every week there is more “idle time” and less “desk time”. On top of this there is the constant struggle to integrate Life and Work into one motion with neither side feeling neglected.What this all boils down to is that the definition of work is changing into a world where we need to be able to access “Any Application on Any Device at Any Time”.
On the personal side we have seen tremendous innovation with respect to mobile apps that replicate our desktop experience with “no compromise” including Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Uber and OpenTable. These applications have driven incremental revenue to the companies who power them but most importantly they have driven enhanced productivity and a better experience for the end users.
Unfortunately on the corporate side of the fence we have been lagging. Lets think about what has happened in mobility over the last 25 years –
- In 2003 RIM/Blackberry emerged on the scene delivering email to mobile devices – Our productivity soared as we could now send emails any time on any device. Corporations embraced this native experience and relied on RIM/Blackberry to provide application security while enterprises retained the ability to wipe devices on demand.
- In 2007 Apple released their first iPhone and the worlds first “Smartphone” – The genius behind this device wasn’t its ability to make phone calls or even its ability to send/receive email but the application ecosystem. Within 12-18 months of launch people started to recognize the benefits of “personal mobility” and application vendors started shifting their development efforts to mobile
- On September 3, 2008 Google officially announced Android delivering an “application-rich” alternative to the iPhone. Multiple vendors such as Samsung seized the opportunity to drive handset sales on top of Android.
- As Smartphone sales skyrocketed these devices quickly started to appear in the workplace. More importantly employees of all ages were eager to have their corporate email enabled. With this began the discussion around “Bring your own Device”.
- In 2010 Apple launched the iPad and Samsung launched their Galaxy Tablet. These innovations now provided larger displays and peripherals driving a richer consumption model for applications and services
- In 2012 Microsoft entered the space with their Surface Tablet. Although sales were initially slow through 2013/2014/2015 Microsoft tightly coupled their Windows 10 launch with the Surface Pro in an effort to deliver a true “Notebook Alternative”. In addition Apple launched its iPad Pro also aiming to deliver an experience as good or better than a notebook in a much more convenient package.
- In 2015 Apple launched the Apple Watch. Apple along with FitBit and others are driving applications and productivity into a new market of “wearables” which are with us at all times.
The market has provided amazing mobile productivity tools with amazing capabilities. Users have made the choice – They want to use all of their devices whenever it makes best sense to use them and want to use them for work as well as play.
We are now at a tipping point – Users have invested their own money to acquire devices and have learned how to use them to increase their personal productivity. Enterprises need to seize this opportunity and strive to extend this productivity into the enterprise allowing all employees to better integrate work and life and extend their productivity into work. To achieve this enterprises need to bridge their mobile strategy from the “Consumer Simple” that users have learned to love and the “Enterprise Secure” that protects their assets.
Im ecstatic to see a new wave of innovation taking place across the industry to bring Business Mobility to life. Full disclosure, I work for VMware so Ill share the specifics of our WorkspaceOne offering as an example –
- Driving ALL Applications whether Web, SaaS or Packaged onto a Single Workspace with no compromise in experience across devices
- Driving ALL file-shares onto the same single workspace – Including Dropbox, OneDrive and others
- Driving all Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) onto the same single workspace
- Driving Single Sign-On (SSO) atop that single workspace so that once authenticated a user can roam freely across all of their corporate applications
- Integrating Mobile Enterprise Management across the workspace to ensure that only appropriate devices have access
- Integrating an adaptive security model across the workspace to allow users a “friction-free” security experience where risk is low and enhanced security where risk is high
Future generations are counting on us to deliver “Any Application to Any Device at Any Time”. Today we think of this world as smartphone, tablet, notebook but the world of tomorrow includes Inernet-of-Things and will extend the reach of mobility into sensors, gateways, cars and appliances. These machines will also be counting on us to maximize their productivity 🙂