Acknowledging that employees are running both personal and business apps on their smartphones and tablets, vendors ranging from Samsung to SAP got granular with MDM (mobile device management) solutions rolled out at this week’s Mobile World Congress trade show. Other companies announcing new approaches to BYOD (bring your own device) and BYOA (bring your own apps) workplace security issues included enterprise software vendors ManageEngine and AgreeYa Mobility, for instance.
At the conference in Barcelona, Samsung is giving demos of new “dual-personality” technology for Android devices — somewhat along the lines of the already existing BlackBerry Balance for BlackBerry phones — known as KNOX.
KNOX provides two separate app environments for employees, one for personal use and the other for corporate use. By clicking on an icon on the home screen, employees can access corporate apps for tasks like email, calendaring, and file sharing which are stored in a cloud-based secure portal.
Samsung and Red Bend Software now plan to launch an enterprise trial of KNOX aboard the Samsung Galaxy S III smartphone. Sony brought out KNOX after taking a stake in mobile security technology specialist Fixmo last month.
Meanwhile, Fixmo and software development house Cellrox have unveiled plans to partner on new “multi-persona services for iPhones and iPads brought into organizations through bring your own device (BYOD) arrangements.”
BYOA, by the way, refers to a move by employees to the use of third-party applications and cloud services in the workplace.
BYOA Security for Mobile Docs, Office 365 & NFC Transactions
Other BYOD and BYOA technologies might also be popping up where you work. Also at MCW, enterprise software giant SAP announced SAP Mobile Documents, a mobile document management system designed to provide BYOD access to corporate documents from phones and tablets. Allowing corporations to embed secure file distribution into both SAP and non-SAP apps, SAP’s new solution supports individual file sync as well as publishing of docs to specific user groups. Reportedly, SAP has its eyes on integrating Mobile Documents into its more all encompassing Afaria MDM solution.
In related activities in Barcelona, AgreeYa Mobility is demoing Onvelop, a new unified collaboration and communications environment geared to providing secure access to Microsoft server software like Office 365, SharePoint, and Lync from tablets and smartphones.
Another exhibitor, ManageEngine, began last fall to add app management support to Desktop Central, its enterprise management platform for servers, PCs, and mobile devices.
With Desktop Central 8, ManageEngine added capabilities that let IT departments build repositories of approved apps, distribute and remove apps from devices, and even analyze the use of the apps.
This week, ManageEngine has announced plans to add more BYOD and BYOA enhancements to Desktop Central, including support for mobile content management, Samsung device policies, and blockage of NFC (Near Field Communication) transactions.
A Siri-Like iOS Help Desk App
Recognizing that IT staff are also prime BYOD users, ManageEngine also introduced an iPhone app for its Password Manager Pro enterprise password management software, plus a VR (voice recognition)-enabled iOS help desk app for ServiceDesk Plus and ServiceDesk Plus-MSP.
“IT guys are always on the go. It can be hard for them to type in info,” noted Raj Sabhlok, president of Zoho, ManageEngine’s parent company, in a briefing for Tablet PC Review.
With the new Siri-inspired help desk app, “a technician can say, ‘Show me all the open help desk tickets I have,'” according to Sabhlok.
Analysts have also pointed to a trend at MCW toward acronyms beginning with the letters BY. “Bring your own Everything (BYOE) will be a prevalent theme at MWC 2013 that extend not only to devices (BYOD) but also to mobile and web applications (BYOA) and cloud (BYOC) offerings,” wrote Mark Levitt, director of Business Cloud Strategies at Strategic Analytics, in an analyst report on MCW.
“On display will be many business products and services that will feed organizations hungry for tools for enabling BYOE to comply with corporate and regulatory requirements.”