On the go in the cloud

According to a survey conducted by the Bundesverband Digitale Wirtschaft (BVDW), online experts expect a significant increase in willingness to invest in mobile cloud solutions among companies in the next three years. The most important motivation and greatest expected value is easier access to data.

Mobile devices are playing an increasingly relevant role in professional life. Aside from communication purposes, they can be used to edit documents as well as access corporate data and special applications. This is carried out in part using proprietary business apps, which are programs that have been developed specifically for the devices and have to be installed on the devices for use. On the other hand, IT resources such as applications, storage capacities or desktop environments are used to accomplish this. These resources run on a server and can thus be used by devices of all stripes. Both solutions leverage the cloud as storage space for the produced data. There are now numerous business applications available, which are specifically tailored to mobile devices. Microsoft’s own Office package is now also touchpad compatible.

Particularly in light of the increasing mobilization of work processes, integration of mobile devices in corporate cloud infrastructures is a big added value for daily work. A quarter of those polled by BVDW sees “easier access to data” as the biggest advantage, closely followed by “more flexibility” (22 percent). The smooth synchronization of data between devices and the cloud resources is a prerequisite for a collaboration on shared documents. It must be ensured that there will be no version conflicts if several colleagues work on the same file at the same time for example. Therefore, solutions are required for synchronizing data, including a rights management.

From an enterprise perspective, mobile cloud computing solutions also provide for increased data security. Although employees can log in via a hotspot and view or edit data in the corporate network, they can not download this data to their local device. In other words, by saving company data on servers instead of on the mobile device, the data remains in the company network and extensively protected. The device can be managed centrally or blocked centrally at any time in the event of theft or other mishaps.

Telephone calls can also be made via the corporate network. The talks are started from a mobile device and then routed through and managed via the corporate network (e.g. landline). The advantages of this include a clear separation of private and business calls, use of a single phone number and access to the company’s central contact database. Employees who are travelling abroad not only save roaming costs, but are provided with a number, on which they can be reached globally no matter which device they use.

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