March 18, 2013, 2:45 PM — Forget processor speeds, screen size and storage. I'm betting that one of the most important specs going forward for new mobile devices is going to be management -- as in, how easily the device in question can be managed by corporate IT.
We're big believers here at Mobile Enterprise 360 in the BYOD movement and the idea that the mobile workforce is here to stay. But because of the explosion of devices and cloud-based apps, enterprise IT leaders have probably the toughest jobs these days, trying to make BYOD and cloud work under a safe, secure system.
That's where vendor management features come in. At the recent RSA Conference in San Francisco I heard IT types from the goverment basically asking hardware vendors to build devices that allowed for root-level security. Operating system control isn't enough for the government types, since OSes have been known to have holes and flaws. For them, control down to silicon level is necessary to ensure a safe path to BYOD.
Though most enterprises don't need government-style granularity, there's a lot to be said for making everyday consumer devices more manageable and easier to secure. When you see partnerships like Citrix's teaming up with Samsung to support Samsung's KNOX initiative to make smartphones easier to secure, I think you are seeing an important wave of the future.
When Dell rolls a new tablet with secure features built in, I bet a lot of IT types took more notice of that announcement than one of any new big-screen phone. And I think it's going to become the question IT leaders ask hardware vendor partners most, going forward: What are you doing for me, specifically when it comes to making devices more secure from the get-go? If you're a corporate IT leader, are you already asking these kinds of questions? If so, what are the most pressing things you're looking for?
Visit us at the Mobile Enterprise 360 community and let us know.