V3 Enterprise Mobility Summit: Apple and Google have found their way into the heart of the enterprise, with around two-thirds of businesses now supporting the mobile platforms.
The results of new V3 reader research, carried out in association with MaaS360 by IBM, show that 57 percent of firms currently support iPhones and iPads, while 52 percent support Android smartphones and tablets.
A further 13 percent of the UK IT professionals surveyed said their organisation supports both platforms, meaning that Apple devices are enabled in seven out of 10 firms, while Android is present in around two-thirds.
Download our Enterprise Mobility 2015 and Beyond white paper to read the full results of the survey.
However, while businesses have embraced iOS and Android, our survey revealed that IT professionals do not necessarily agree with these rankings. Android was chosen as the most suitable operating system for use in the enterprise by only a fifth of respondents, topped by iOS and Windows Phone.
Neil Florio, worldwide vice president at MaaS360 by IBM, was not surprised to see the preference for iOS and Android over BlackBerry, which garnered little support among our respondents.
"Most of our customers have moved from BlackBerry to a multi-OS environment, to iOS and Android as the primary," he said.
"Some still have BlackBerry, but that's becoming few. iOS has a larger install base than Android among our customers, but Android is growing too.
"This is really where enterprise mobility management comes in. Each of these devices has a different management framework and there's different things you can do. We've built that into our platform, the actions you can take on those devices."
The research also found that almost half of organisations do not have any formal mobile management processes in place, even though they allow their staff to use mobile devices for work purposes, while around four in 10 firms have some kind of technology to manage mobile use.
This will come down to company size, according to Florio.
"In larger organisations, that number will be higher. They've really understood they need a policy in place and a management framework to support this. I think SMBs might be more behind, but they're ramping up really fast," he said.
"They end up starting with technology and then adopting a policy, which isn't always the best approach. We always recommend starting with the policy.
"Standardise the devices that you want to manage, determine which users are going to have access to mobile, classify the data so you know how to secure it, and understand what access users should have. And then technology can help to manage that."
Although only five percent of firms currently support wearable technology for work purposes, this is set to increase soon as businesses look to take advantage in particular use cases.
"Mobile is a very horizontal technology for business, but there are also very vertical-specific applications, and wearables becomes even more specific to the use case too," Florio said.
"Wearables are not for every industry. It's about a problem they're trying to solve, it's not a consumer adoption model. The way you solve mobile devices like smartphones and tablets is very consumer-driven. With wearables it's almost the opposite of that. The organisation is driving that."
Florio explained that roles suited to wearables typically need access to ‘glanceable' data.
"It's not the same robust interface as a smartphone or tablet," he noted.
"You want to be hands-free and access data while you're working, so this might be field service workers, production line workers, or doctors trying to look at patient vital signs without moving away from a procedure."
To read the full results of our survey, which also covers BYOD v CYOD v BYOC, and the key benefits and challenges of mobile in the workplace, download our Enterprise Mobility 2015 and Beyond white paper.
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