2
Sep

MobileIron Promotional Content Depicts a Mobile First World

Perhaps Microsoft’s CEO was not far off when he articulated a new vision of a Mobile First Cloud First world back on March 27, 2014. This writer paid a visit to MobileIron’s website and found very similar themes running through a short promotional video exposed on the site, which provides an overview of the imperatives driving MobileIron solutions.

MobileIron offers a Mobile Device Management (MDM) solution. This MDM solution has been included in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for MDM. Most recently, Tiernan Ray of Barrons reported on analyst comments about MobileIron, which were attributed to Karl Kierstead of Deutsche Bank. According to Ray’s report, the availability of MobileIron, together with Apple’s next release of iOS (iOS 8, rumored to make its debut in September of this year), spells trouble for BlackBerry, and may hasten the pace at which large organizations migrate out of Blackberry’s BES.

A number of posts to this blog have been concerned with BlackBerry’s BES and the enterprise market for MDM solutions.

Readers interested in important technology themes running through the marketing communications efforts of ISVs should make special note of how Nadella first articulated a number of themes now carried forward by Microsoft competitors. Microsoft is a recent entry to the MDM market place via its Enterprise Mobility Suite. Perhaps it makes sense for MobileIron to address the same themes in its video. If nothing else, the reverberations point to the credibility of the points Nadella made back in March of this year.

During its recent IO event for 2014, Google added further credibility to Nadella’s presentation during a segment speaking to productivity. The same claims Nadella made for Microsoft software, and its objective to empower its customers with the most efficient methods of attaining optimum productivity, were made for the Android platform.

The reverberations are not, in and of themselves, particularly important. What is important is how they affirm the relevance of these themes for consumer and business computing in 2014. “Mobile First, Cloud First World” is not only a sophisticated juxtaposition, in rhetoric, of images and the “world”. It should now be considered an accurate portrayal of how consumers and business users accomplish their computing tasks.

Ira Michael Blonder

© IMB Enterprises, Inc. & Ira Michael Blonder, 2014 All Rights Reserved

3
Jul

Are Consumers Clamoring for Smart Watches?

Anyone with an interest in computer technology targeted to consumers, who has some free time (plan on approximately 2.5 hrs), should review the Keynote, Google I/O 2014. The Keynote includes some important metrics on how global adoption of the Android O/S for mobile devices has been growing.

The keynote also includes a matter-of-fact presentation of the Android Smart Watch project, in sharp contrast to the mystery surrounding Apple’s own efforts on a similar product, and, finally, the patents Microsoft holds for this type of device.

All three of the featured presenters in the opening 50 minutes of the Keynote:

  • Sundar Pichai, Senior Vice President Android, Chrome & Apps
  • Dave Burke, Director of Engineering, Android, and
  • Avni Shah, Director of Product Management, Chrome

can be clearly seen with rather bulky devices strapped to their wrists: square boxes for Burke and Shah, and a circular disk for Pichai.

The Android smart watch effort is a component of the Wearables project. David Singleton, Director of Engineering presented on this topic in the Keynote. With the very first sentence of Singleton’s remarks: “We’re right at the beginning in a new phase of the miniaturization of technology, which means that it’s finally possible to make a powerful computer small enough to wear comfortably on your body all day long”, this writer’s skepticism was stimulated. Just who wants to wear a powerful computer on his or her body all day long? Anybody out there? Or will these devices end up consumed by the same “super geek” segment of “bleeding edge” stuff who are buying and wearing Google Glass?

Unfortunately, this writer thinks the latter will be the case. What should be of even greater concern to anyone viewing the Keynote should be an inaccuracy in Singleton’s comment. Pacemakers, digestible sensing systems for colonoscopy, etc, are all powerful computing systems (many of which are smaller than the device presented at this event). Some of these devices (pacemakers, etc) are used by their human hosts 7×24. But Singleton doesn’t mention any of these. Why?

The obvious reason ought to be these other powerful computing devices aren’t programmed to present ads online. Nor are they designed to deliver email notifications, texts, etc.

Android is betting tech consumers need to acquire more powerful methods of maintaining an “always on” condition, meaning a 7×24 hr collection system for potentially high stress activities like reading email, texts, etc.

Looming behind all of this conjecture is a notion strikingly similar to one expressed, recently, by Jeff Bezos of Amazon on the topic of another solution without a problem – the Fire Phone. Bezos extolled the good fortune implicit to Amazon’s current freedom to design whatever may come to mind, just as long as it’s unique, regardless of consumer sentiment.

This writer fears the market prospects for devices conceptualized within an implementation of this notion are pretty poor. Time will tell, will it not?

Ira Michael Blonder

© IMB Enterprises, Inc. & Ira Michael Blonder, 2014 All Rights Reserved

2
Jul

Notes on the Google I/O, 2014, Keynote Presentation

Sundar Pichai, Senior Vice President Android, Chrome and Apps at Google presented the Keynote at Google I/O, 2014. Perhaps the most important piece of information included in Mr. Pichai’s remarks amounted to an enormous increase in what he referred to as “momentum in mobile”, which, he claims, is now propelled by over 1 billion active (30 day active) Android O/S users. In turn, the rate at which this momentum has been building over the last 3 years amounts to doubling, each year. Regardless of one’s opinion of the business value of the mobile market segment connected via this operating system, simply the size of it points to inescapable opportunity, for someone, at some point in time.

As would befit an executive at an online advertising business, Mr. Pichai followed up on this announcement of enormous growth, with some related announcements depicting the absolutely enormous extent of opportunity for advertising represented by recurring points of human engagement with this mobile technology:

  • 20 Billion Daily Text Messages
  • 93 Million selfies taken each day via Android mobile devices
  • an estimated 100 Billion daily checks, by humans, on these devices

Three themes were woven throughout the opening of the Keynote:

  1. Perhaps no other mobile O/S has done more to develop a truly global market than Android. Mr. Pichai’s opened with references to international locations where developers unable to travel to the event were gathered, locally, to attended it. Then, later in his remarks, he made reference to apps built by Android ISVs performing “mission-critical” roles in developing markets; for example, a money transfer and “Micro-financing” App for consumers located in Kenya. Mr. Pichai claimed “40% of Kenya’s GDP” actually flows through this App
  2. Android ISVs are, perhaps, best positioned to capitalize on the opportunity, near term, represented by the enormous growth in the horizontal reach of the global Android mobile user market. While this writer maintains a skeptical position on Google’s ability to monetize the market potential via online advertising methods, he doesn’t dispute the substantial worth of the same market for ISVs, who are, by no means, constrained to simply offering promotional systems to these consumers.
  3. But the great majority of all transactions (the writer is hedging here, as the Amazon and Microsoft Android implementations do not appear to support App transactions through Google’s Play Store) for these Android Apps will flow through Google Play. Anyone following Google will want to factor in some estimate of positive impact on their bottom line

Where can readers obtain more opinion on the impact these statistics and themes may have on Google’s own performance? Some early commentary on the event highlighted point 2) and 3), above. Readers interested in this point should take a look at ‘Play” has much in store.

Ira Michael Blonder

© IMB Enterprises, Inc. & Ira Michael Blonder, 2014 All Rights Reserved