Why the Enterprise Mobile App Development Market Is About to Explode

 
 
By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2014-10-03 Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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    1 - Why the Enterprise Mobile App Development Market Is About to Explode
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    Why the Enterprise Mobile App Development Market Is About to Explode

    by Chris Preimesberger
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    2 - The Mobile Enterprise App Market Is Poised to Explode
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    The Mobile Enterprise App Market Is Poised to Explode

    Researchers project that the mobile enterprise business application market will nearly double from $31 billion in 2012 to $61 billion by 2018. (Source: "Global Mobile Enterprise Business Application Revenue, 2012-2018," Strategic Analytics, December 2013)
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    3 - Tablets Will Rule the Enterprise
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    Tablets Will Rule the Enterprise

    The market penetration of tablets is growing much faster than any previous computing platform, reaching 80 million unit shipments per quarter only four years since the iPad's launch. In fact, Gartner predicts that by 2017, a whopping 70 percent of mobile workers will be using tablets. Forrester predicts there will be approximately 900 million tablets in service by 2017. These tablets incorporate the appropriate form factor for editing documents and carrying out business tasks.
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    4 - More Business Processes Will Go Mobile
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    More Business Processes Will Go Mobile

    By the end of 2014, 50 percent of business processes that involve human tasks will require near-real-time responses that are mobile-enabled. (Source: Gartner Research: "To the Point: Deliver New Mobile Value Through Process Change," 2014)
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    5 - It's an App-Centric World
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    It's an App-Centric World

    A lot of applications will be needed to enable those business processes on mobile devices. Herein lies the opportunity for application developers to cash in: Right now, those apps are mostly done by custom development. Commissioned development is, by far, the most lucrative revenue model in the business and productivity sector, bringing on average $67,000 per app per month. It is also very popular among developers, with 45 percent of organizations that focus on business apps currently delivering custom development services.
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    6 - Current Focus Is on Enterprise File Sync and Store
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    Current Focus Is on Enterprise File Sync and Store

    Early-adopter mobile workers already access a host of consumer cloud services, such as Office 365 and Salesforce1, for services such as file sync and storage, project management, enterprise social networking, as well as office tools such as Microsoft Office Online. While most of these services are currently consumer-grade, improvements in security models and enterprise IT governance are transpiring, and enterprise-grade services will proliferate over the course of the next few years.
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    7 - New Enterprise Apps Will Emerge
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    New Enterprise Apps Will Emerge

    The next step in the evolution of the mobile enterprise will be the widespread usage of enterprise cloud services and applications directly from mobile devices. This is already starting to happen; case in point, SAP today makes available more than 60 apps on the Apple App Store. But usage is still low as the mobile user maturity evolves.
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    8 - Business Processes Will Span Apps and Services
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    Business Processes Will Span Apps and Services

    Information about business processes will eventually span multiple applications and services. For example, a sales opportunity could span several applications and services: documents in SharePoint/Office 365, CRM (customer relationship management) data in Salesforce, and discussions in Yammer or Chatter. The onslaught of information from many disconnected enterprise services will make it virtually impossible for workers to follow everyday business processes.
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    9 - Silos Will Impede Expansion of the Mobile Enterprise
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    Silos Will Impede Expansion of the Mobile Enterprise

    One way to overcome the poor user experience caused by information fragmented across multiple cloud systems will be the adoption of a single enterprise cloud ecosystem. These are being developed by vendors such as Microsoft with Office 365, Salesforce with Salesforce1, Oracle, Dell and IBM with the IBM Cloud Marketplace. These mega-vendors propose that enterprises integrate all business information in one central cloud ecosystem, thereby reducing the complexity of data retrieval and consumption. Most organizations will resist this new generation of vendor lock-in—and potential security risks—and opt for the flexibility provided by working with the best cloud service for each task.
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    10 - The Enterprise Hub Emerges to Reduce Information Overload
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    The Enterprise Hub Emerges to Reduce Information Overload

    A new breed of "enterprise hub" app will emerge to deliver a single-screen experience for multiple back-end cloud and on-premises services. The ability to see all relevant business services—in the most appropriate context, and in one app—will simplify business task completion and will remove the limitations encumbered by the single-vendor ecosystem silo.
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    11 - Enormous Opportunity for App Developers
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    Enormous Opportunity for App Developers

    The opportunity to create this new enterprise user experience is attracting an army of skilled mobile app developers. In 2013, approximately 900,000 developers (out of 2.3 million mobile developers worldwide) mainly targeted the business app market. Many more will join their ranks, since business apps are built around more solid business models—often extending successful desktop/cloud service. The enterprise has a more sophisticated developer base and has more experienced developers.
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    12 - Security Consolidation Will Make the Mobile Enterprise More Manageable
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    Security Consolidation Will Make the Mobile Enterprise More Manageable

    As with many new markets, the mobile enterprise has spawned a host of new market segments, including a variety of device/application security and management options. The market will undergo a consolidation over the next two years, greatly simplifying the device infrastructure necessary for an organization to roll out and support an enterprise-grade deployment.
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    13 - MDM, File Sync and Storage Solutions Will Merge
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    MDM, File Sync and Storage Solutions Will Merge

    Both MDM and file sync and storage solutions are becoming increasingly commoditized. To remain competitive, vendors are employing various strategies to differentiate, including offering loss-leader pricing to grab market share, trying to differentiate on features and building partner ecosystems. This effort will largely play out over the next 12 to 24 months, leaving only a few major players in the field; most of these players will offer both MDM and file sync and storage capabilities in the same product.
 

A recent survey by mobile industry researcher VisionMobile found that despite the vast investments enterprises are putting into developing mobile apps, to date only a minority (15 percent) of independent mobile developers are actually targeting the enterprise market. This is because developers generally see the consumer market, at this point, as the quickest/easiest way to make money in mobile development. Consumers seem to want an app for everything they do, and the market has proven they will pay if there is perceived usefulness. However, in a longer-term perspective, enterprise mobile app development might be a better way for developers to go; researchers insist the market is about to explode. With the largely untapped potential of mobile enterprise apps, smart developers need to move quickly to cash in on what may be a pending gold rush. This slide show, put together with eWEEK reporting and industry insight from Gartner, Forrester and enterprise collaboration player harmon.ie, provides insights on how the mobile enterprise user experience will evolve and how mobile enterprise app developers can capitalize on new opportunities.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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