According to Gartner, 1.2 billion smart phones and 216 million tablets were sold worldwide in 2014. That’s an astonishing 46 every second. At the same time, according to a recent Silicon Angle report, 82% of companies saved money by moving to the cloud and public cloud workloads are expected to grow by 44%. We live in a Mobile + Cloud world.
This inevitable nexus of forces is forcing companies to change how they do business. Customers expect to make purchases on their smart phones and get notifications instantly. Employees expect to perform day-to-day tasks like signing off on POs or vacation requests on their smart phones. Our devices can monitor our health, tell us when friends are nearby and guide us to our destinations.
Maribel Lopez wrote a great article at Forbes on What Mobile Cloud means for your Business. Truly mobile-enabling your company doesn’t just mean buying devices or instituting a BYOD policy. It means that your applications, workflows and services must be:
- Device aware: Does the device support touch, gesture, voice navigation, camera? What is the available screen size?
- Network aware: Can the application use location services? Will it work with erratic or slow connectivity?
- Sensor aware: What type of data is available on the device?
- Identity aware: How can you secure access not just to devices but to these mobile services?
Cloud computing is an essential enabler. Without AWS and its kin, how could small businesses support millions of users? Without incredibly cheap storage solutions from Dropbox, Microsoft and others, how would you access your data from anywhere on any device? Cloud-based meeting software like Go To Meeting allows small companies like ours to have a global presence and customer base. And, of course, without affordable workflows from frevvo and others, how could small businesses automate their workflows and increase the speed with which they do business?
It’s only going to get easier and more interesting as service providers increasingly publish Cloud APIs and Internet of Things (IoT) devices proliferate.
The combination of Mobile & Cloud fundamentally changes the equation for businesses. You don’t want to think of a Mobile Strategy and a Cloud Strategy but a combined strategy for both.