It’s a common story by now: The consumer software market is being reshaped by smartphones and apps. Lesser known (but equally important) is the impact that smartphones and apps are having on the enterprise market.
Researchers at Gartner recently identified ten strategic trends—mobile and apps behind two of them—that will define and potentially disrupt the enterprise market over the next three years. These technology trends, according to the market research firm, will require large investments and are crucial to adopt, lest the business gets left behind by its competitors.
Among its predictions, Gartner believes that a growing variety of devices, computing solutions, user contexts and interaction requirements will make “everything, everywhere” strategies impossible to achieve.
“The unexpected consequence of bring your own device (BYOD) programs is a doubling or even tripling of the size of the mobile workforce,” Gartner wrote. “This is placing tremendous strain on IT and finance organizations.”
As such, it recommended that companies need to thoroughly review their policies on employee-owned mobile gadgets and, where necessary, update them. These guidelines need to define clear expectations around what users can and cannot do, as well as balance flexibility with confidentiality and privacy requirements.
Gartner recommends that developers “focus on creating expanded user interface models including richer voice and video that can connect people in new and different ways.”
Over the next few years, no single tool will emerge as optimal for all types of mobile application, so companies will have to expect to need to deploy several to meet their various challenges, they said.
Other trends identified by Gartner as having a major impact of businesses in 2014 and beyond include the emergence of ‘software-defined anything’—not just networking, but data centers, storage and infrastructure.
It also highlighted personal clouds, the Internet of Everything and smart machines as developments that company will have to plan for.