Category Archives: Mobility

Beyond BYOD: Sweeping Changes Required to Capture Full Benefits of Mobility, New CompTIA Study Concludes

Organizations seeking to maximize the economic and productivity benefits made possible by mobile technologies must look beyond simply which devices are used and re-examine business processes and workforce needs, new research released today by CompTIA concludes.

“Rather than focus on the device level, companies will need to assess the specific needs of their workforce and match the device,” said Seth Robinson, director, technology analysis, CompTIA.
“For maximum benefit, workflow changes will need to be considered prior to evaluating workforce needs. But this is not a trivial matter and companies will need to weigh the cost of operational disruption and change management against the potential advantages.”

At this point, most companies are not taking these steps, according to CompTIA’s Second Annual Trends in Enterprise Mobility study. Most of the current activity revolves around devices – provisioning, securing and allowing access to existing systems.

The majority of companies in the CompTIA study allow their employees to bring their own mobile devices to work. The most popular option is to have a mix of corporate-liable and individual-liable devices (58 percent). A full third of companies still strictly mandate which devices can be used for work purposes and do not allow any type of employee-provided device. For another 8 percent of firms, employees provide everything.

For companies that provide at least some devices to employees, the top two reasons are to standardize and consolidate IT support, cited by 39 percent of firms; and because it is more cost effective to provide devices rather than a stipend (31 percent).

“This reasoning is contrary to the school of thought suggesting that BYOD can be a cost-savings move,” Robinson noted. “Best practices will emerge that may change the cost dynamics, but BYOD may be similar to cloud computing in that companies may find other compelling reasons beyond cost savings to pursue the strategy.”

As employees bring their own mobile device into the workplace, they also want to bring their own applications and services. As a result, the field of Mobile Device Management (MDM) is rapidly shifting to include Mobile Application Management (MAM).

Companies are pursuing a range of solutions, including exploring/implementing virtual desktops (49 percent), building custom mobile apps for business systems (29 percent) and moving business applications to a cloud model that can be accessed through a browser (28 percent).

Many Parts to Mobile Ecosystem
From an enterprise perspective, the mobile ecosystem – in conjunction with cloud offerings – presents a significant shift. Rather than having tight control over the entire experience, IT architects now must contend with devices that often serve dual purposes and connect to third-party systems. The accompanying chart illustrates this challenge.
“Between app developers, cloud providers, wireless carriers and device OEMs, there are now many parties that can influence function and workflow,” Robinson said.

This leads to many questions:
Who is in charge of the physical device?
Who controls the software on the device (including the OS?)
Who controls the way the device connects?
How secure are the backend systems that are accessed through mobile apps?
With 98 percent of the companies in the CompTIA survey claiming some amount of mobile solution adoption, this trend already shows extremely broad appeal and will have a high level of impact as it continues to evolve.

First TD-LTE Mobile Device Certified

The E398s-81, a USB dongle from Huawei Technologies, became the first TD-LTE device to achieve GCF Certification during September 2011. The device, which has been certified for use in Band 38 (2570-2620 MHz), is being used in the large scale trials of TD-LTE technology that are currently being conducted in China.

GCF, the Global Certification Forum, announced the extension of GCF Certification to TD-LTE for devices operating in Band 38 in July 2011. Certification for FD-LTE devices operating at 700 MHz (Band 13) and 800 MHz (Band 20) was introduced in December 2010 and extended to 2100 MHz (Band 1) and 2600 MHz (Band 7) in April of this year. Further bands will be brought within the scheme to reflect the variety of spectrum allocations that have been released for LTE in different parts of the world.

GCF Certification provides confidence that new devices are compliant with relevant standards and interoperable with other devices and network infrastructure systems irrespective of the vendors.

The availability of certified devices is an important milestone in the development of new mobile technologies such as TD-LTE. The first GCF-Certified FD-LTE devices, for the 800 MHz

Augmented Reality Remaking the SmartPhone Experience

By Bill Bulkeley, Cisco

When the third Harry Potter book appeared in 1999, one of the startling bits of wizardry at Hogwarts was a magical map that labeled people walking around the school and showed hidden passages and how to get into them.

Today, the wizards developing apps for smart phones are doing similar things with augmented reality.

AR, as it is known, is a technique for enhancing the real world with digital information automatically delivered to a viewing screen. A classic example: in televised football games, the digitally-created yellow line that shows how far the ball carrier needs to rush to get a first down.

AT&T and Road America Rolls Out New Location-Based Emergency Roadside Assistance Offering

Mobile location technology is playing a new role in the evolution of emergency roadside assistance, thanks to an innovative location-based solution developed by AT&T and Road America, a leading roadside assistance service provider.

Previously, most drivers needed to have GPS units installed in their cars to be located in the event of an accident or roadside breakdown, but a new solution offered by Road America is bringing this important safety feature to any basic cell, landline or smartphone on any network.

Using AT&T Location Information Services, Road America has developed LocateMe Service

AT&T, T-Mobile to file with FCC around April 21

AT&T and T-Mobile USA plan to file paperwork about their planned merger with the Federal Communications Commission next week. “We plan to file our public interest statement at the FCC around April 21,” AT&T’s Michael Balmoris said in an email on Thursday.

AT&T’s $39 billion bid to buy Deutsche Telekom AG’s T-Mobile USA will also be reviewed by the Justice Department to ensure it does not violate antitrust law. The request for the Justice Department review was filed last Friday.

The FCC will review the proposed deal to ensure it is in the public interest. The review process could easily take a year.

The deal would concentrate 80 percent of U.S. wireless contract customers in just two companies — AT&T/T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless, a joint venture of Verizon Communications and Vodafone Group Plc. AT&T, currently the No. 2 U.S. mobile carrier behind Verizon, has said the merger will spur innovation and economic growth by improving quality and expanding wireless service to 95 percent of Americans.

SI Wireless Selects Movius Voice Messaging Solution

Movius Interactive Corporation has been selected to provide SI Wireless with its comprehensive voice messaging solution as part of a major initiative to bring advanced communications to rural areas across the US.

SI Wireless is a start-up CDMA carrier offering the latest next-generation voice and data services to regional areas across Tennessee, Kentucky and Illinois. The company will utilize Movius

Google LTE or Self Defence? Google offering $900m for Nortel’s Patent Portfolio

Google has offered $900m for Nortel’s patent portfolio. Google claims it does so to protect it’s own patent claims and their Android strategy sure has a play in this. Nortel finds Google’s offer high enough, but there is still time for other parties to bid higher, though we find that not too likely. According to the NY Times the portfolio holds over 6000 patents.

Is Google just protecting their patents or are they trying to get a piece of the LTE market to at one day become a mobile operator? Please share your views below.