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Posts Tagged ‘Consumerization’

Earlier this week, the market leader in application delivery controllers (ADCs), F5 Networks, added to its security portfolio by announcing its own BYOD solution, known as Mobile Application Manager. Mobile App Manager is designed to remove many of the challenges associated with BYOD by taking the burden off the device and pushing the functions into the network.

The industry is still in the early days of BYOD and many companies have looked to mobile device management (MDM) solutions to help enterprises handle the influx of consumer devices. In my opinion, and I’ve said this for a while, traditional MDM solutions are a great stop gap technology to help deliver BYOD quickly, but these solutions are device-centric and that limits their scalability.

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There’s no hotter IT initiative today than “bring your own device.” A recent survey ZK Research conducted shows that 82% of organizations now  in some way support the use of consumer devices in the workplace. This is a marked difference from just a couple of years ago, when very few organizations supported it. For those companies that do not support it yet, get ready because the heat’s going to come from above your pay grade and it will be your CEO who says “I don’t care what our corporate policy is, make this iPad work.”

This is one of the reasons mobile device management (MDM) has been such a hot market over the past few years. MDM enables the safe on-boarding of devices into the corporate workplace. It ensures that the device adheres to corporate security policies, drops certificates onto the device and configures the device automatically. Generally, a good MDM solution can reduce provisioning time from hours to mere minutes.

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When I look back at the past decade, it’s remarkable to see the changes that have taken place in corporate IT. For those of you who don’t know my past, I was in corporate IT prior to being an analyst. I, like many other IT individuals, built an IT philosophy based on tight control. IT had control over everything – the networks were all private lines or frame relay, each application had its own dedicated servers and storage and, of course, IT owned the end points. The whole model of IT was built on a premise of IT control even if there were a lot of inefficiencies in the architecture.

Today, the IT model has been flipped on its head. Things that were the exception are now the norm. Remember when people had to ask permission to work from home? Now it’s done all the time. When you a saw a Mac in the workplace it seemed unusual, but now not it’s weird to not see several. Virtualization was a tool for the labs; today there are more virtualized workloads than physical ones. Because we live in this consumerized, virtualized, mobilized, cloud-driven IT environment, we can do so much more with technology than ever before. People now blend work and life so smoothly there’s very little transition time between the too. Life is great, right?

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Today, Cisco announced AppHQ, a corporate-focused Android app store for its Cius tablet.

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Last week the White House announced that Vivek Kundra, the first ever federal government CIO, will leave his position in August.  Prior to Kundra, federal IT was considered about as aggressive as Lebron James in the NBA finals.  When Kundra took over that post in 2009, he became best known for his “cloud first” policy for all federal agencies, which resulted in a plan to shut down over 800 federal data centers.

However, it’s worth noting that he modernized the federal government in many other ways.  One of Kundra’s initiatives was to modernize the government through consumer technologies like iPads and Google mail.  At Yankee Group, the consumerization of IT is one of our primary research areas and Kundra’s ability to consumerize the government is taking that to the extreme.

So where does the government go from here?  Whoever is named the successor to Kundra cannot take their foot off the gas.  For the first time ever, the US government has the opportunity to show the world “what’s possible” when it comes to technology.  There will be some challenges to come for Federal IT between CIOs but that doesn’t mean the brakes will be put on.  Life goes on and so should the modernization of the Federal government.

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