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Mobility Community Blog

Mobile Musings

Created: 29 May 2013 • Updated: 30 Jul 2013
Patrick Tyler's picture
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It is kind of funny how things change in the telecom and mobile world…
 

If I think back not so long ago, BlackBerry was in a position that seemed to be entrenched in the enterprise and all other phone manufacturers were scrambling to figure out what features made it compelling enough to move from consumer to enterprise.  We had several iterations of Windows Phones that all failed to catch on, which is still why I do not have high hopes for the Windows Phone 8 (even though it has some interesting features).  Nokia was in the leader position of the consumer market.  It seemed like we were always waiting with great anticipation to see what new Nokia and BlackBerry phones were on the horizon…

Skip forward 5 years…  Now we see a turn of events where Nokia is being left in the dust and BlackBerry is being displaced; both former leaders in their markets and now in massive decline.  In their places, we are seeing iPhones taking on corporations due to having newer exciting technologies for users and more controllership, consistency, and more enterprise features (similar to BlackBerry for Admins).   However, admins are all trying to figure out how to offer the same security that BlackBerry offered on these phones like: secure email, secure communications, and normal security controls along with some controllership of apps.  The consumer phones have been replaced by many brands and versions of Android smart phones for the same reason that Nokia excelled – free and cheap.  In addition, Android phones also run apps similar to iPhones, so consumers do not feel like they are missing out on anything.  The elite users that would have bought the coolest newest BlackBerry or Nokia are now mostly buying the iPhone or a Samsung Galaxy which are closest in features…

Skip forward to today…  Now we see iPhones starting to fall a bit behind the technology of some Android counterparts with communications options (Wi-Fi Direct, Bluetooth 4.x, PAN, NFC) and better cameras, screen sharing for either presenting or collaborating, personas (to let more than 1 user leverage a phone and present just their apps / data / customizations), and with the advent of Samsung Safe and KNOX, a way to provide secure communications, more enterprise controls, and containerization.  Many companies are still looking to iPhones to be the first wave of devices to replace BlackBerry phones due to consistancy and controls, but Androids are making huge strides in overcoming limitations that would prevent enterprise adoption.  Without Apple stepping up, in a couple of years it too could be the next BlackBerry…  It will be interesting to see what Apple is going to do next to close the gap and what Samsung is going to do to create further controls to make the devices more enterprise friendly…  

Bottom line…  It is good to be in a diverse changing technology field as it builds excitement, keeps us fresh, and looking forward to see what the next “toys” are going to be and what new challenges we will need to overcome (and maybe not even from the same players as we see on top today)...