Cloud computing and the mobile movement are both influencing how businesses operate and support employees. Cloud-based environments are accessible through the Internet, allowing staff members using smartphones, tablets and mobile PCs to complete work-related tasks anywhere, regardless of their physical location.
Devices powered by Android, iOS and Windows Phone are taking over the office setting, making bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trends more commonplace throughout the corporate setting. These platforms are supported by robust mobile app stores, which can support employee productivity with apps designed for numerous work-related functions.
As more companies support BYOD and cloud computing, they will likely look for ways to create custom apps for Android, iOS and Windows Phone that suit their individual needs. Free and easy-to-use tools such as Android controls, iOS controls and Windows Phone controls are the building blocks that allow businesses to produce highly visual apps that are native to these platforms.
These solutions also do not require users to have an extensive background in mobile application development since there is support from thousands of developers around the net that help firms create their own offerings. Firms can also view sample codes to make the process even easier, especially if this is the first time they are creating their very own apps.
Cloud-based Mobile Market Poised for Impressive Growth
The corporate sector is moving quickly to embrace the possibilities of solutions such as cloud computing and mobile devices. A Visiongain report said that the global mobile cloud market is projected to expand from $77 billion in 2011 to $240 billion by 2016. By this time, mobile cloud revenue will total $45 billion, increasing at a compound annual growth rate of 55 percent beginning in 2011.
The report noted that the adoption of mobile devices and advancement of LTE connectivity are driving this level of growth. The creation of mobile applications is also expected to benefit moving forward.
"Visiongain believes that open standards will make it easier for developers to build cloud based applications that can be used across a variety of smartphones," the market research firm stated. "Issues with mobile cloud security, privacy, feasibility and accessibility remain a major concern for both the customers and the enterprises. However with complex and secure products now available on the market, many enterprises are jumping into the mobile cloud bandwagon."
The advancement of HTML5, OneAPI and BONDI will also have a great impact on the mobile cloud market in the near future, Visiongain said.
Both Mobile and Cloud Among Top IT Innovations
A survey of Fortune 500 CIOs and CTOs by Sierra Ventures found that there are certain technologies that are defining the overall business landscape. Of those polled, 32 percent cited mobile devices and big data as the top IT innovations, followed by 24 percent who named cloud computing and 12 percent who said social media.
According to Tim Guleri, managing director at Sierra Ventures, decision-makers have a lot on their plates when it comes to emerging technologies.
"We found that today, CIOs and CTOs have to wear multiple hats, such as being strategic while keeping up with ever-changing technology advances and maintaining legacy systems," Guleri said. "They have to evaluate risk and be innovative -- all while keeping the lights on and the systems up and running."
Supporting these innovative technologies, however, will not be easy for some companies. Sierra Ventures found that 32 percent said a skills shortage is the top impediment to using these solutions, followed by 29 percent who said managing legacy equipment, 25 percent who cited unclear corporate goals and 16 percent that noted scaling new technology will be difficult.
Not all businesses are experts in every aspect of their operations, which includes cloud computing and mobile devices. Businesses should not let skill gaps get in the way of improving how they operate and support a mobile workforce, especially in today's ever-changing corporate landscape. However, with tools such as Android, iOS and Windows Phone controls available, firms no longer have to be pros at everything. These tools allow them to create custom applications that support a range of smartphones, tablets and other computing devices so that workers can remain productive anywhere with an Internet connection.