Making the Most of Cloud-Enabled Enterprise Mobility

In Summary

Who: IT leaders from PwC, Jackson Hewitt Tax Service, EQT and Critical Systems

What: Discussing the business results they’re experiencing at the intersection of mobility and the cloud

Why: To provide real-world examples that you can apply to your enterprise mobility and cloud strategies

Combining the power of cloud computing with the freedom and functionality of mobile devices can give enterprises access to a wide range of key benefits, including increased reliability, real-time updates, device-agnostic applications and more. And it’s a fast-growing field: A Juniper Research report issued in January 2010 predicted that, by 2014, businesses and individual consumers will collectively spend nearly $9.5 billion worldwide on cloud-based mobile applications.

Bo Parker, managing director of the Center for Technology and Innovation at PwC, says devices of all kinds, including PCs and laptops, are becoming more cloud-centric. “Google’s Chrome OS is sort of the [showpiece of this] trend, where there are no local apps any more,” he says. “You’re starting to see a real shift toward the cloud, in general, as the way that end devices deliver and support applications.”

At the same time, Parker says, it’s important to keep in mind that mobile devices are entering a new period of massive innovation. “We see mobile devices as having the potential to introduce incredible new opportunities for companies to change their productivity levels, to do new things and to differentiate themselves in ways that the personal computer [allowed them to do] many years ago,” he says. (For more on this subject, read the article Mobility’s Rise in the Enterprise.)

Cloud computing can make a significant difference for mobile users as their devices offer continually improving functionality. “The cloud throws a tremendous amount of computer horsepower at every little task you might do,” Parker says. “The partnership between very powerful mobile devices and even-more-powerful cloud platforms creates the sort of opportunity that stretches the mind for application developers, and introduces new opportunities for applications that didn’t even occur to people in the desktop PC world.”

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