The IBM Impact Conference 2013, held in late April, took a big chunk of time this year to discuss mobile strategy and the latest mobile solutions for businesses. In a nutshell, IBM thinks mobile is important for future enterprises — but it is the details of its mobile expansion that really catch the eye.
First, IBM has updated its IBM MobileFirst suite to integrate business process tools, essentially giving mobile developers the same business abilities that once belonged only to traditional PC users. With the new focus on mobile enterprise, users now have new resources to collaborate over mobile, increase production through mobile solutions and develop a wide variety of apps for employees or customers (the IBM MobileFirst site also offers advice, such as seven questions to ask for a BYOD strategy).
The IBM Impact blog broke down the Mobile Mini-Main Tent event, which hosted a variety of speakers and technologies concerning the mobile world. According to the post, 91 percent of mobile users keep their device within arm’s reach 100 percent of the time these days, and around 800,000 apps exist to meet the needs of the mobile lifestyle.
Rather than pushing purely software solutions, many speakers took time to focus on customer needs. Kristen Lauria, VP of IBM Mobile Solutions and WebSphere Marketing, reminded people that mobile devices were just devices, and that customer connections still reigned supreme. Shamayun Miah, VP for the IBM Mobile Global Centre of Competency, told customers, “Design your business around mobile; not mobile around the business.”
IBM’s Unconference, a portion of Impact 2013 devoted entirely to technical web development, also had plenty to say about the mobile world — developers were promised the AT&T Developer Mobile App Hackathon, designed to equip developers with the skills and tools they need to develop or refine their apps. The Unconference also kicked off with the Mobile Open Technologies Meet-Up, which brought together team leaders and developers over the concept of open technology, the concept of using free or low-cost software to help businesses unite mobile strategies with the cloud, social media and big data analytics.
Clearly, IBM Impact believes that mobile efforts are necessary to reach customers. Fortunately, the tech company is taking the idea a step further, offering training and tools to make dynamic development easier for companies still floundering in their mobile efforts. For a closer look at the IBM concept of mobile data, read up on the feature piece, “Mobile Isn’t a Device. It’s Data,” which explains the importance of useful mobile data and offers an interesting case study with health care executive search company ZurickDavis, which switched its offices over from email to a mobile-based communication system for employees.
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