It's the end of year and, along with the winter gusts here in New England comes a similar bluster - that of the analysts' predictions. Given my penchant for bluster and the fact that nothing helps pass a long winter's day than writing fanciful predictions, I've got one of my own.
In all seriousness, 2008 will prove to be the year that witnesses the dawn of Mobile Operations. "What's that? Mobile Operations? Don't you mean IT Operations," you say? Yes, this new sub-role, which will be getting a fair deal of coverage and, with any luck, some hard-data and real-world examples of how organizations will be merging mobile voice, mobile data, wireless infrastructure, devices and device management into one, central IT function. This movement by IT organizations, which we expect to see take shape over the course of 2008, will reduce de-duplication of tasks, allow for synergies in managing device and the increase the potential for pooled negotiations with vendors and carriers.
Keep an eye out for January's upcoming research Key Wireless Trends That Will Shape Enterprise Mobility In 2008 which will discuss the role and trend in more detail.
As mentioned in my last post, I was recently at Cisco’s C-Scape. One reporter asked me to comment on my thoughts regarding a specific announcement (if you can call it that): Cisco will begin go to open up IOS. So you’ve probably got the same question I had: ‘What does “open” mean?’ As best I can tell, it means providing some standards-based APIs so that IOS can be controlled by third-party applications and infrastructure. Seems interesting, but I feel there’s more to it than that.
The iPhone, a consumer powerhouse, has garnered a lot of interest among prosumers that leaves us wondering if it's quite ready for the enterprise. We've received a surprising volume of client inquiries over the past few weeks regarding whether large organizations should add the iPhone to their list of internally supported mobile devices. Forrester strongly believes that the first generation of the iPhone is not an enterprise-class mobile device. Limitations like its lack of support for push email and calendar, third-party applications, and disk or file encryption make the iPhone impossible to secure and manage. However, improvements are already being taken to make the iPhone more business friendly with a new generation that will support 3G networks and will be open to third-party applications.
Is there anyone out there that thinks we're off base here and that has welcomed the iPhone within the walls of your enterprise? If so, we'd love to hear your thoughts. Look out for an upcoming Forrester report on this topic as it is proving to be a hot one in the mobile enterprise space.