|Business Briefs by Ashish Bedekar – "Opportunities in Enterprise Mobility for Developers"
No, we are not talking about opportunities for Trekkie developers to move freely on the USS Enterprise! We are actually referring to mobile devices, services, apps, etc. to enable broad use of mobile computing in enterprise settings.
Even today, enterprise mobile applications provide a framework for vital business information to be captured and shared across the sales force and supply chain. With ubiquitous high data connectivity, and better and more powerful devices available, this is an area that is expected to present exciting new opportunities.
Since this field helps reduce cost and increase productivity, it has caught the attention of everyone in the value chain, including handset OEMs, telcos, IT services, etc.
The Business Opportunity
Various studies forecast that the mobile enterprise application market is a billion dollar plus opportunity.
Key ecosystem players, like mobile operators and handset OEMs, are focused on enterprise business − and enterprise apps are a logical extension.
In the latest update to its Enterprise Mobility Market Data, ABI Research says mobile broadband revenues from the enterprise segment for cellular connectivity of laptops, netbooks, and media tablets will reach $36 billion worldwide. Hence, you can expect more push from all players in this space.
Here are a few key trends that are fueling enterprise mobility:
- Increased adoption of smartphones, tablets, etc.
It is cliché to say that smartphones and tablets are going to be the dominant personal computing device! Users of enterprise B2E (business-to-employee) and B2C (business-to-customer) smartphone and media tablet mobile applications are forecast to grow at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of nearly 90 percent and exceed 830 million active users by 2016, according to a new study from ABI Research.
- Accelerated adoption of cloud-based services and focus on security and identity management
There are numerous cloud-based hosting services that have made it possible for apps/services to be served across the world at an economical cost to developers. With advancements in security, identity management and newer technologies like mobile virtualization, it will be much easier to provide enterprise-grade apps and solutions. There are solutions emerging to address the challenges enterprises have dealing with multiple devices on multiple platforms and with enterprise-grade security and identity management. There are also many operator-developer forums and network OEMs that have released a multitude of cloud-based APIs directly from location, billing, identification, etc., which makes app development easier.
- Consumerization of enterprise apps
Technology adoption has taken an interesting route throughout the years. There are technologies such as PCs that started off as enterprise and have shifted to consumer mode. Similarly, consumer applications like social media are being embraced by the corporate sector. Consumer applications are mobile, and employees and customers expect business apps to follow. Even blue chip enterprise software companies are increasingly adopting a consumer mindset, sometimes called “gamification”. Pioneer companies are helping create traction for the new enterprise apps. This paradigm shift is creating more opportunities and making it easier for innovative apps to be adopted in the enterprise space.
It should also be noted that business customers are ready to pay for solutions that solve real problems – and there are enough of them in the business environment!
This is an overview of the opportunities for developers…let’s keep the conversation going!