Okay, let’s do a little thinking outside the Silicon Valley box today. Let’s start off by assuming that if you are a regular reader of my blog, you likely have 1-2 “mobile” devices that you use frequently. If you have one of the larger tablets like the iPad, you’ve likely tried attending a conference with only your tablet.
Here’s the trick. I bet every single one of you, once you return to your office immediately starts working on a PC. Before you protest, keep in mind those Macs are Personal Computers (PC), as are those new-fangled Ultrabooks.
Let’s face it, when creating information of even moderate complexity, you still can’t beat a PC. If you need to multitask between applications, PCs win every time.
Mobile adds a new dimension to how you do things. It allows users to be more flexible in when they work. It requires IT to be more flexible in providing solutions.
The use of mobile devices doesn’t alleviate the need to think about the PC or to make it a priority.
Different Spin on an Old Topic
Just forget Mobile. It isn’t the real thrust of what we are seeing today, just the most obvious. It is cool and sexy, but it is really just part of allowing users to Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). While a newer trend than Mobile, I’ve decided it more readily describes the challenges facing organizations.
Mobile and BYOD are both about flexibility. Among PC devices, there are Microsoft and Apple environments, not to mention a myriad collection of browsers. On their mobile devices there are Apple, Android, and Windows environments. Any user might have a complete mish-mash of platforms. I myself regularly use three of the environments above and at AIIM I working to support all five.
BYOD, and the ability to seamlessly transfer work between devices, is the real goal here. It isn’t about enabling mobile. It is about allowing users to work in a familiar and comfortable environment without IT having to provide all the answers themselves.
More Than Mobile
Being able to support mobile is only half the battle. Every device needs to be supported. That means browser friendly solutions. Mobile apps are great, but IT cannot force someone to use their mobile device for work unless they provide the device themselves, thus defeating the BYOD concept.
Secure devices and device-independent applications. That is today’s world. That is today’s challenge. The transition isn’t easy, but once made, life can be very good.