Monday, October 10, 2011

A New Approach for Mobile

A recent Information Week article discusses the need for a mobile application strategy and lays out a concise plan of attack.

After starting with a logical premise - Mobile application development is a new animal, and IT leaders shouldn't expect to tame it using their same old tricks - the article presents the challenges and options for a mobile app environment.

While mobile has the normal life-cycle phases (development, distribution, security, support and enhancement) it's unique in that things are changing very rapidly and IT doesn't control the devices and platforms/operating systems.

Some important concerns about mobile devices:
  • Easily lost or stolen
  • Less reliable
  • Slower processors
  • Less memory
  • More expensive

The 8 major elements to consider in mobile strategy and some associated options:
1. Dev Environment
Customize per device, one app for multiple platforms or web-based app

2. Software Distribution
Over-the-air distribution, syncing with a PC or an "App Store"

3. Maintenance, Patches, Upgrades
Automatic user notifications, blacklist an earlier version and force upgrade

4. Security
Local storage, access, encryption, private networks, remote data clearing

5. User Support
Users' responsibilities and capabilities, training

6. Expense Management
Mobile networks vs. Wi-Fi

7. Support for New Platforms
Testing and certification, new mobile appliances

8. Your Mobile Policy

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