SCAM, short for Social, Cloud, Analytics, and Mobile were the four hot buzzwords last year. Out of these, the last one, viz. mobile is possibly the most disruptive, because it brings the power of computing at the fingertips of every individual. As a result, it ends up indirectly driving the remaining three trends, and then some.
Start with Social Media-look at the number of people using Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, or even more serious apps like email, enterprise apps like CRM, etc. on their smartphones. The action has suddenly shifted from using these and more serious apps on PCs to smartphones and other mobile devices.
The next letter in the acronym is "C" for Cloud-here again the whole benefit of cloud computing is that organizations can give their employees access to enterprise apps from anywhere at any time and from any device.
The third letter of the acronym is "A" for Analytics. By using mobiles to access social media and cloud based apps, a lot of data is generated. Organizations can capture and analyze this data to gain a competitive edge. Since most of this is unstructured data, it further fuels the need for other hot technologies, like Big Data.
Organizations therefore, can't afford to ignore the increasing use of mobile devices by their employees. According to our survey on Tech Priorities of SMBs and large enterprises in 2014, carried in this issue itself, around 20% of the respondents are allowing their employees to bring their tablets to office. Very few are actually buying tablets for their employees or keeping tablets out of their systems completely. If this is the situation for tablets, then the penetration for smartphones is even higher.
The same survey also indicates that nearly 30% of the respondents across both SMB and large enterprises are creating custom apps for tablets, while another 40% are planning to use more enterprise mobile apps next year.
A third aspect that can't be ignored is the tremendous amount of innovation that's happening on mobile devices, to deal with the growing mobile device usage. We've covered this third aspect in our cover story this time, where we tell you the latest products and technology developments in mobile devices.
These trends clearly indicate the growing use of smartphones and tablet in the office, so the only thing left to do for CIOs, is to figure out how to leverage it. BYOD or "Bring Your Own Device" is a clear outcome of the increased penetration of mobile devices, so the sooner you have a BYOD policy ready to handle it, the better. Our survey also indicates that 19 to 22% of organizations already have this in place, while 24 to 28% of the remaining respondents plan to have it in place this year.
BYOD alone won't be sufficient to deal with mobility. You'll also need to consider mobile device management solutions and mobile security solutions to deal with the onslaught of mobile devices.
It's an irreversible trend, so the best thing to do is to go with the flow.