While email and web access are the primary uses for smart mobile devices, over the next several years, the multitude of uses for these devices will continue to proliferate. We have already seen this trend with the introduction of services such as Intuit GoPayment and a number of “appcessories” entering the market that are enabling our devices to do much more than data consumption. While we were formerly limited by the software built into our mobile devices, appcessories, or hardware that plugs into these devices, have enabled us to take these devices further than we (or their manufacturers) imagined.
As the functionality of mobile devices continues to grow, IT will need to realign its strategy for managing and securing them. When personal data, such as credit card information (as is the case with GoPayment) is continuously being sent via these devices, how they are managed and secured both inside and outside the corporate network will need to considered far more carefully.
And this is true not only for appcessories and add-on functionality for mobile devices but also as other industries continue to take on increasingly mobile functions that just a few years ago were known only to consumers. Take for instance, the mobile scanning devices used by many parcel carriers or the fact that a growing number of physicians are now using tablets to manage patient data and remotely consult colleagues (check out more on that from my fellow blogger Steve Workman here).
IT will need to focus on a more in-depth “end-to-end” strategy – meaning thinking beyond traditional MDM and incorporating extended management and improved security features. It will be interesting to see how the MDM and IT service management markets may realign themselves as this oncoming shift approaches.