Where is mobility heading in 2014? Some analysts predict that the way consumers use mobile devices will change, forcing organisations to rethink how they approach security on BYOD devices and mobile application development.

 

In 2013, we witnessed the rise of BYOD (bring-your-own-devices) and cloud computing among general mobile consumers. In 2014, analysts are predicting that:

  • The way consumers use their mobile devices as an end device to consume information or products and services will shift. Instead, they envisage that consumers will use their mobile devices to control other devices and systems.
  • The introduction of wearable technology and the increasing use of mobile phones as control devices within the home or office will encourage organisations to seek opportunities to leverage new technologies such as Near Field Communication (NFC) or iBeacon.
  • Organisations will take a different approach to secure company data that better supports the BYOD movement.
  • Agile development will become more prevalent in mobile application development.

Organisations have traditionally approached the development of mobile applications in a harried manner, eager to have a mobile presence in the market. The rush to be the first-mover in the market or not be left behind has meant that many organisations have not properly thought about how the mobile application can best serve their customers.

Such approaches to mobile application development have taken the traditional Waterfall development approach with established requirements and a strict deadline. As mobile usage changes, organisations will need to adjust the way they have traditionally approached mobile application development. Just like desktop application development, organisations will move towards an Agile development approach of continuous delivery.

Agile development alone is not enough for organisations to survive now, they need to be able to deliver to the market on a continual, iterative basis. By developing a minimum viable product (MVP) that can be delivered rapidly to the market, organisations can step back and review how they can deliver a mobile application that would be of value to their customers. Such improvements can then be deployed to the market on a continual, iterative basis. However, it is important that any planned application upgrade is carefully thought through and will actually offer value to users.

The rise of BYOD and the growing number of people using multiple devices has presented a complex security problem to organisations. “As an employer, you have very limited control over a BYOD device and therefore, cannot ensure the security of company data. However, we are in a transition phase where mobile technology and mobile application development are maturing,” commented Kareem Tawansi, CEO of software development provider, Solentive Software.

“Organisations are beginning to take a different approach to these new age security issues brought on by BYOD. Instead of trying to find ways to secure multiple devices, a virtually impossible task, organisations are now looking into using containers to secure the application instead; which I believe is a more sensible and realistic approach,” concluded Tawansi.

By taking an iterative approach to mobile application development, businesses will be able to continually provide their customers with an application that will benefit from the latest technologies and provide an enterprise mobile application to their employees that will be secure, irrespective of the device they choose to use.