Mobile Device Makers Vie to Replace BlackBerry as Enterprise Standard

By Michelle Maisto  |  Posted 2014-04-13 Print this article Print

Dawson called Samsung's Knox security platform "heads and shoulders" above other Android vendors' offerings.

Samsung has certainly seemed to be positioning itself to welcome BlackBerry's defectors. In January 2012, it introduced SAFE (Samsung Approved for the Enterprise), a certification that adds a suite of security features and "enterprise-friendly capabilities" to those included in Android. A year later, Samsung introduced Knox, and a year after that it rolled out Knox 2.0, an improved application container solution for enterprises that adds support for Android policy configurations for third-party containers, such as Good's.

This January, Samsung introduced Samsung Enterprise Services, a portfolio of services to support enterprises through the life of a mobile device deployment. Its newest flagship device, the Galaxy S5, introduced in late February, includes an on-screen fingerprint sensor.

But Samsung isn't yet a BlackBerry shoe-filler.

Strategy Analytics' Burden says that Knox still needs to be paired with an MDM solution, like a Citrix or VMware. ("That's why Samsung is coming out with its own cloud-based MDM.") If an IT department hooks up a Samsung Knox-enabled device to VMware's AirWatch, they pay something in the neighborhood of $3.60 a device for Knox and then another $5 or $6 per license for AirWatch, said Burden.

"If you have BES10, that license is the only license you have to pay."

But like Dawson, Burden expects Apple and Samsung to split and control the majority of enterprise customers.

Gartner's Dulaney also adds Nokia/Microsoft to his list of enterprise players, noting: "They are the choices because they have all implemented high security and have app stores that have been curated. Patches are applied relatively quickly. Expect Lenovo, with its purchase of Motorola, to be a player, and there are niche players such as SilentCircle."

The BYOD Supporters

The popularity of the BYOD trend is part of the reason why BlackBerry will never again be the old BlackBerry—and neither will any other company. Corporate mobile device deployments are now heterogeneous because workers' choices are, too.

Are the software companies offering to add device management capabilities, containerized security, the division of personal and corporate data, and basically all manner of features to supporting BYOD the real beneficiaries of BlackBerry's decline?

"That's why you see the smaller players being gobbled up by the larger players," Burden told eWEEK. "There's a lot of revenue to be made in mobility management." That's why AirWatch and Zenprise became such attractive acquisition targets, he noted. "One by one, we're seeing them gobbled up by the IBMs and Citrixes," Burden said.

Citrix completed its acquisition of Zenprise on Jan. 2, 2013. In a statement, Citrix said, "IT will now have a comprehensive set of tools that make it easy to manage and secure devices, apps and data, while users will now be able to access any app from any device, giving them the freedom to work and play anywhere."

In November 2013, IBM purchased MDM provider Fiberlink for an undisclosed sum, and in January, VMware, wanting a mobility management solution in its portfolio, purchased AirWatch for $1.54 billion.

"Mobility management isn't just phones and tablets; it's going to manage everything," said Burden. "The vendors know that it starts with phones, but it will expand to everything. The BYOD companies are winning. They're worth every penny."

Follow Michelle Maisto on Twitter.



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