From phablets to smartwatches, 3D printing and digital payments, everything is going mobile and shows no signs of slowing down. As more personal devices are being used for work-related activities, the lines between work and personal life are blurring.
A growing number of enterprises already support BYOD and see overwhelming benefits from it, including improvements in productivity, operational efficiency, cost savings and opening up new growth opportunities. According to CompTIA's 3rd Annual Trends in Enterprise Mobility study, about 50 percent of large firms and nearly 60 percent of medium-sized and small firms already have a partial or full BYOD deployment.
CIOs need to have an effective BYOD policy in place that balances user needs with enterprise management and data security. To help you set the right policy for the coming year, here are my five top BYOD trends in 2015.
1. Rise in specialised BYOD solutions
Expect to see vendors build specific BYOD solutions for different industries or sub-segments as the unique requirements of SMBs versus large companies, public versus private organisations, and highly-regulated industries open up niche opportunities for tailored mobile offerings. The Enterprise File Sync and Share (EFSS) market is dynamic and will change significantly with players adding unique values to differentiate or align themselves. For instance, someone focused on healthcare will be looking to build connectors so doctors and other providers can have access to medical profiles and history with appropriate privacy constraints. This will be done through an EFSS app where all files and patient records will have the same user experience.
2. Security focus will shift from devices to data
Data security and unauthorised access is one of the top challenges for companies as they build out mobile solutions. But with workers wanting to connect with multiple devices from multiple locations, it will be essential for companies to implement a single solution to manage all device types and operating systems -whether they are PCs, laptops, tablets, smartphones or smartwatches. In this new model, trust at the endpoint no longer exists and the specific hardware with which a user connects with will become less and less important. Instead, end users will go to one place to access anything they need from any device they use and there will be a unified endpoint and consistent approach to authentication and security across devices.
3. The number of enterprise apps will explode
Those tiny little app icons that appear on most device screens are changing the way people communicate, play and work. While apps like Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp are hugely popular in the consumer space, business apps have taken less of the focus. But with workers using whatever tools they need to get their jobs done and apps such as Evernote and Trello growing in popularity, more enterprises are starting to integrate mobile apps into their business processes. VisionMobile estimates that more than $28 billion was spent on apps by businesses and professional users in 2013 and forecasts that the mobile enterprise app market will reach $58 billion by 2016. Expect to see a lot more business apps, both developed in-house or by third party vendors, hit the market next year as companies look for new ways to drive revenues, customer engagement and employee productivity.
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