12/11/2014 7:39:39 AM
The Enterprise Mobile Dilemma: I Don’t Know Whether to Laugh or Cry
HTML5 Mobile TechnologyEnterprise Mobility,Native Apps,Web Apps
App Developer Magazine

The Enterprise Mobile Dilemma: I Don’t Know Whether to Laugh or Cry

Stuart Parkerson Stuart Parkerson in Enterprise Thursday, December 11, 2014

Every once in a while it’s nice to have a good laugh and when I saw the photo shown here on Phunware's blog I had to laugh. It’s a picture from the company’s holiday party and as you can see, they definitely have a sense of humor about mobile development. 

There is also a grain of seriousness communicated by the image, because the mobile industry is introducing new products at a head spinning rate. For enterprises and their IT departments, there seems to be more confusion than consensus.

When I first saw the photo, I was actually on the Phunware site to check out a new op-ed that the company had published titled, “HTML5, and Other Enterprise Mobility Reality Checks.” The article offers an examination of the current state of enterprise app development as it relates to app deployment.

Shouldn’t it be simple for companies today? I mean, we all are operating under the same mobile ecosystem. Yes, it changes fast, and yes, technology is a moving target, however it’s an environment that is the same for all of us. So why is it so hard to figure your individual mobile strategy? It’s all about two things: phones/other smart devices and operating systems. 

You would think that having two dominant operating systems would make things easier – just go with a native app. However, how those two operating systems function as they operate the devices themselves is what causes the big problem. For Android, there are literally thousands of different variations of phones/tablets/etc. out there today. And these phones are running a wide range of OS versions – nice if it’s a pastry/candy shop (ie - Kit Kat, Ice Cream Sandwich, …) but not so nice trying to get your app to function perfectly on all of that different smart technology.

Apple should be super easy right? You still have a number of different versions of the OS, but not as many devices to deal with. However, Apple leads the industry in introducing innovative features so if you want to include security with biometric identity or the payment option of Apple Pay, then you are stuck with the newest devices, which a number of users still don’t have.

So, maybe the obvious solution are web apps. Well, maybe not – HTML5 mobile technology offerings abound, however do they truly offer the native experience across all those devices? Ok, then how about a responsive website and be done with it? Its doable, but throw any native features right out the door.

So what is the answer? There are a number of schools of thoughts and Phunware’s take in the article boils down to this: “If you’re considering an enterprise mobile app to help your business run better or to make your employees’ jobs easier, make sure you do a reality check first. Here are four truths to wrap your head around if you want mobile to be an asset to your business - not an obstacle.”

Read more: http://www.phunware.com/blog/department-miss-enter...

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