• Despite hype to the contrary, mobile device management and mobile application management is not mainstream
• Innovative vendors are out in front solving problems that most enterprises haven’t begun to even think about
The juxtaposition of this week’s strategic partnership announcement between Boxtone and Good Technology against our mid-October report on enterprise BYOD progress in 2012 serves as a great example of how big the disconnect is between the hype of MDM/MAM and reality of mainstream enterprise adoption of policies governing the use of employee-owned devices at work. The Boxtone/Good agreement calls for the integration of Good’s mobile application and data security functionality found in its Good Dynamics and Good for Enterprise products with BoxTone’s mobile device, analytics, and service management functions. The analytics piece, due in 2013, is especially intriguing. Planned instrumentation will allow enterprise IT to determine the frequency of use for mobile enterprise applications, monitor application performance and utilization, and monitor user behavior to learn whether enterprise mobile applications require end user training or ease of use enhancements. Such analytics will allow enterprises to get more bang for the development buck and insure desired productivity gains are achieved.
Now contrast that blue sky vision with the experience reported by the Current Analysis’ enterprise and IT user community (i.e., IT Connection) on where their organizations are at in managing access to corporate resources from employee-owned smartphones and tablets. A majority of our panel members reported that their organizations have not even developed policies governing the use of end user-owned devices in the enterprise. And the management functions deemed most important in MDM/MAM vendor selection are configuration and authentication – suggesting that those organizations are more focused on helping employees gain secure access from their smartphones than on exerting broader controls, securing enterprise data and efficiently managing mobile enterprise applications. (See BYOD 2012: Are Enterprises Making Much Progress? October 19, 2010).
Good Technology and Boxtone are clearly out ahead of broad-based market demand—especially with their planned analytics functions. But their vision is good, and they are doing an admirable job of serving the early adopters/early majority today that have already begun tackling the big problems in managing the mobile enterprise. And they are setting themselves up as thought leaders in taking on the complete lifecycle of enterprise mobile management. It will be interesting to see how long it takes the slower moving late majority and laggards to catch up with them.