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Enterprise developer says 2013 will be the year mobile apps for business really take off

by Doug Drinkwater

November 15 2012

Move over Angry Birds and Words with Friends; business and productivity apps are ready to share, if not take center stage, says one app developer who reckons that 2013 could be the year when business apps become all the rage.

The spotlight shined on business apps at a recent seminar in London, hosted by UK development firm Mubaloo to give some insight on how businesses can develop, design and secure their own-brand apps.

And while the event spelled out a lot of the ‘dos’ and ‘don’ts’ when it comes to putting these apps together, there was a positive overall message coming from the company’s leader on businesses and their approach to mobile applications.

“An increasing number of businesses are preparing a suite of apps, both for internal and customer purposes,” said Mubaloo’s CEO Mark Mason. "I think that this is really the end of the [app] gimmick and that we’ll see 2013 as the start when businesses really start to understand the value of apps.”

Some may argue that businesses are already well aware of mobile's impact thanks to the ever growing bring-your-own-device (BYOD) trend, but Mason thinks that businesses should brace for another wave of mobile devices thanks to the launch of Windows 8.

 “On the tablet side, it’s very much an iPad market at the moment but Christmas is coming up and a lot more tablets are coming out.

“We’re seeing [app] projects on iPads and ring-fenced projects (using apps for specific purposes) on Android tablets, but Windows 8 tablets are going to come through from the enterprise’s installed base of desktops.

“We see companies giving these tablets to their workforce and we’ll see more Windows smartphones too. We’re also seeing a little bit of that on the development side."

However, while the development company -- which has helped build iPhone, Android and iPad apps for the likes of BP, Virgin Media and the NHS -- was happy to promote the increasingly readiness of businesses to embrace mobile, there was a frank word of warning for the IT departments looking to secure these applications.

“There is a mismatch of what IT is thinking and the line of business. What we see is that while business is driving through apps, IT is now starting to wake up to realizing that they need to support these apps.

“That's a big change and businesses are now looking at MAM and MDM solutions to support their IT departments,"said Mason, using the acronyms for Mobile Application Management and Mobile Device Management respectively.

Business apps will be tackled at TabTimes' forthcoming TabletBiz conference in New York on November 27.

Doug Drinkwater is the International Editor of TabTimes and is based in London, England.

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