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Plotting the Enterprise Mobility Ecosystem

by (April 3, 2014)

Enterprise mobility adoption is taking off in leaps and bounds, there are still many businesses figuring out where this new piece of IT could fit into their plans. Over the next few months every business – small or big, would start appreciating the benefits that mobile technologies bring to their business operations. The extent of their excitement towards this new technology would entirely depend upon the kind of use cases they would find within the enterprise. But the recent trends suggest that if one start looking deep into their business operations, nearly a good chunk of them end up with a solid use case for mobile technology.

Integrated Approach to Enterprise Mobility Ecosystem

The kind of work that can be accomplished using a mobile device could never be easily done with any other component of Enterprise IT technologies that existed before. The variety of functionality that the mobile devices demonstrate in conjunction with the mobile apps that are equipped onto it, has created a whole new set of services, business entities or an ecosystem around it. This ecosystem as we may identify as “Enterprise Mobility Ecosystem” has at this point several different players operating in the market either individually or through bilateral partnerships.

Enterprises may be at different stages of maturity in their mobility journey, some of them could just be starting and the others may have started deploying or even thinking of building their own mobile applications. Regardless of whatever stage they may be, enterprises might want to have a holistic view of the different players/stakeholders that can come together and partner in their initiatives. This would not only be applicable for enterprises trying to be more strategic around their mobility projects, but it could also help in laying out a comprehensive mobile roadmap for rest of them.

Here are the different entities an enterprise would want to engage for stitching together their ‘Enterprise Mobility Solution’:

  1. Carriers/Telecom Operators: Companies that provide the connectivity and its core elements such as Data, Voice & Device services.
  2. Device Manufacturers: The hardware providers who build, sell, & distribute smart phones, tablets and special-purpose mobile devices
  3. Mobility Software Platform Providers: This is a broader segment with several set of solution providers such as Mobile Device Management, Mobile Application Development Platforms, Mobile Application Management, Enterprise Mobility Management and Mobile Enterprise Application platform. Understanding, finding out the differences & their suitability is a topic for another day. However, a lot of the core aspects of these solutions may overlap when one looks at them from a broader perspective and in most cases these solutions exist as distinctively separate products in the market.
  4. Mobility Solution Firms: Companies that provide “ready-to-implement” applications or a cluster of productivity & Collaboration solutions like Field Service, Field Sales, Mobile approvals for Managers and so on
  5. Professional Services Partners: Consultants or development shops that leverage the mobility software tools, help customers build Mobile Apps from scratch on the Native platforms and help connect the mobile applications with the Enterprise back-end systems.
  6. Mobile App Lifecycle Solution Vendors: Solutions that provide a complete view of the mobile application performance throughout its lifecycle, hence enabling higher ratings, better user feedback and hence increased adoption.
  7. App Stores: Companies that help in rating and promotion of the application within their Play Store or marketplace.
  8. Enterprise Software Vendors: Enterprise application vendors like Oracle, SAP and others looking at a roadmap for quickly deployable line-of-business mobile applications or in some cases a mobile-ready application module itself.

While many of us would feel that most of these entities have already been in existence since years, however it is entirely a call taken by the Enterprise’s IT team to learn and navigate through the enterprise mobility ecosystem. They have a choice to either stitch together not-so-compatible proprietary offerings to make their mobility solutions work harmoniously or hire a mobility services partner to do it for them.

As an enterprise ecosystem player, do share your thoughts.

Srinivas Keshavalu

Manager – Global Alliances & Partnerships, RapidValue Solutions

2 COMMENTS

  1. Madhu /  April 4, 2014 AT 1:15 am / Reply

    Good post! From my experience,many large players players are shunning proprietary platforms for MEAP. Only MDM or EMM platforms have gained in acceptance across industries for BYOD purposes. But app development still remains fragmented across approaches like native apps, html5 and open frameworks like phonegap, sencha, Rhomobile, titanium, etc. The approach varies from use case to use case. Most MEAP platforms are not yet mature enough to support true cross platform native app experience. Many vendors like IBM, SAP are stitching together platforms with acquired products & solutions. This makes their solutions less cohesive. Additionally, the force fit of their larger IT platforms with the mobility piece is a major turn off for mmost customers. Other pure play mobility players like Kony are prime candidates for acquiring, as witnessed in the recent consolidation seen in this vendor space.

  2. Sachin Gupta /  April 6, 2014 AT 5:49 am / Reply

    Nice introductory post !. The adoption is one of the key parameters in plotting the mobility strategy for building the complete ecosystem. The adoption rate will determine the ROI of the enterprise over a period of time.

    In case of BYOD , enterprises have huge challenge of building a robust framework which supports most of the devices available in the market from UI and performance perspective. Security is another big challenge an enterprise has to tackle while building a framework / ecosystem.

    Gamification and GEO fencing are some of key concepts which enterprises needs to implement as well.

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