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Mobile Device Management Vendors: Be Prepared for Widespread Android Acceptance


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November 12, 2012

Mobile Device Management Vendors: Be Prepared for Widespread Android Acceptance

By Susan J. Campbell, TMCnet Contributing Editor

The proliferation of mobile devices flooding the market has given some companies pause as employees are using various smartphones and tablets to access confidential corporate information in record numbers. Mobile device management has helped oversee this process and minimize the security risk presented by telecommuters accessing network data remotely from these mobile devices. 

Still, in an effort to limit risk and increase control, corporate IT departments usually stipulate which devices and operating systems it will tolerate. With Apple’s (News - Alert) past success and cult-like following, it may be tempting for mobile device management policies to only permit devices powered by the iOS mobile operating system, but that might be a mistake. 

A recent MSP Mentor article details an International Data Corporation (IDC) report about how the popularity of Android (News - Alert) devices, specifically tablets, is on the rise. To give some background, the IDC has been a world leader in market intelligence services for the information technology world for more than 48 years. 

In fact, IDC research has helped investors, members of the IT community, and key decision makers make smart, fact-based decisions when it comes to technology purchases and the development of strategy needed to attain business objectives. 

According to the report, there were more than 27 million tablets sold in the third quarter this year, with Androids making a powerful comeback. Most of the sales for Android devices came from Samsung (News - Alert) and Amazon. Apple’s share of the market for the same quarter, however, fell to just over 50 percent, which represents a nine percent drop from the previous year. The message here is clear: customers still want Android support for mobile device management.

Meanwhile, Apple’s share of the market declined and its competitors picked up the slack. Samsung, one of the top five tablet vendors, had a 115 percent increase in sales from second to third quarter, shipping out just over five million tablets third quarter. This represents a 325 percent increase in sales from the same period last year.

Other top competitors include Amazon, ASUS, and Lenovo (News - Alert). Each of these vendors saw steady growth from second to third quarter. Part of Amazon’s success stemmed from the release of its latest high definition Kindle Fire tablets. Ironically, the seven-inch HD model hit the market in September about the same time that Apple’s latest iPhone (News - Alert) – the iPhone 5 – made its debut. The addition of new products to Amazon’s line-up helped increase global market share from second to third quarter by 4.8 percent to nine percent respectively. 

Once you go Mac, you never go back? Not necessarily….The growing popularity of Android devices on the market is forcing companies to take a second look at their mobile device management practices.

Edited by Jamie Epstein

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