Would you like your SharePoint to go?

As the world becomes increasingly mobile and smart-phones and tablets are used to access enterprise systems, it is only natural that the new breed of travelling executives, sales and marketing professionals or field-based staff are going to expect access to corporate information systems that help them to remain productive, like Microsoft SharePoint, to be made accessible on their mobile device of choice.

The enterprise mobility challenges for CIOs are numerous, like:

  • How do you provide secure access to enterprise systems for mobile users (particularly when they are accessing on-premise systems like SharePoint across the corporate firewall)?
  • Are your enterprise systems mobile-ready and engaging for your mobile users?
  • Do you have a bring your own device (BYOD) or multi-platform corporate device policy?
  • Does your mobility solutions vendor support your policies on security, multi-device/platform, user experience, etc.?
  • How do you incorporate custom developed web parts and applications developed in standard SharePoint for mobile users?

One would naturally think that the standard mobile views provided with Microsoft SharePoint should suffice – but unfortunately (for you) they rarely do.  SharePoint’s standard mobile interface is designed for the lowest common denominator interface, resulting in a poor user experience that does not support finger navigation and productive mobile working, without significant manual development and customisation work – that will need to be done for each target mobile platform and device form-factor.  This does not of course, address the issue of providing secure access for mobile users who want to access their SharePoint environment outside the corporate firewall, which is not supported without having to licence additional firewall security products and systems.

Which of the following mobile SharePoint user interfaces would your mobile users find more engaging?

Solutions like Azurati’s SharePoint2Go, allow enterprise users to access Microsoft SharePoint securely on any smartphone or tablet device; while ensuring that mobile users can remain productive when they are on the road.

SharePoint2Go is a cloud-based enterprise mobility solution that provides multiple authentication options to allow corporate users to securely access any version of SharePoint on any mobile device, making it BYOD-compliant as standard.  Mobile security has been designed in to the DNA of SharePoint2Go with security features like smartcard/2-factor authentication, through to a zero footprint policy (meaning that no residual data or content is left on the device) and 256-bit encrypted access.  So, if your user’s are looking for SharePoint to go, make sure they use Azurati’s SharePoint2Go.

To find out more about SharePoint2Go and to request a demonstration or live trial, visit www.azurati.com.

If you are interested in joining other like-minded business and IT professionals who are interested in mobile working with Microsoft SharePoint, why not also join our LinkedIn Group, Mobile SharePoint.

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Does it still make sense to partner in a cloud and mobile world?

Adobe, along with several other enterprise software companies, have recently announced a policy of ‘mobile-first’ in product development.  This has largely been due to the dramatic take up of connected devices, like smart-phones and tablets, that are being used as privately-owned devices in the enterprise as part of BYOD initiatives, or as company purchased and approved devices in the enterprise.

The adoption of smart phones and tablet devices has also begun to change user behavior and expectations when it comes to using and interacting with enterprise applications on mobile devices.  We are beginning to see not just the consumerization of IT, but the consumerization of applications, where enterprise applications need to look, feel and behave like consumer app-store applications.

New cloud-based mobile enterprise apps, like SharePoint2Go™ can be used almost instantaneously from initial purchase; so where does that leave value-adding partners who have traditionally added value in enterprise software by setting up and configuring software products and technologies?

The good news for enterprise software resellers, consultants and systems integrators, is that in the new cloud-based and mobile world there are still plenty of opportunities to add value and to generate significant revenue.  The enterprise mobility space will present many new opportunities for services-based companies.

Although some cloud-based and mobile applications can be used with little set up or configuration work, there will invariably be a requirement to create a more custom user experience and secure environment, that will require consulting and development services to create.

IT industry analysts, Strategy Partners, make the bold statement that ‘Mobility will cause the replacement of every single corporate information system’ – this will either be achieved by converting legacy on-premise based systems into mobile and cloud-based applications, using development platforms like Azurati ASAP™, or by new entrants coming in to the market.

Cloud computing and mobility raise significant issues for CIOs, who desperately need guidance and assistance from trusted expert third parties.  Many organizations have not formally defined policies around BYOD, mobile security and cloud-based infrastructures, which all present consulting opportunities for professional services organizations.

Enterprise customers may also feel more comfortable transacting business with a trusted and established services partner, than a new-generation cloud or mobile software vendor.  Licensing models for cloud and mobile applications can also provide attractive new annuity-based revenue streams for the partner.

For companies like Azurati, partnerships are central to its business strategy. Partners provide the market reach, scope of service delivery and expertise and trusted relationships with customers that many young technology vendors do not have.

Azurati will be attending the Microsoft Worldwide Partner Conference (#WPC12) in Toronto from the 8th to the 12th of July 2012.  If you are attending, please look us up.

Azurati launches SharePoint2Go – a new secure cross-platform mobile SharePoint experience

Earlier this week, Azurati launched SharePoint2Go, a new cross-platform mobile SharePoint solution that allows mobile enterprise users to access Microsoft SharePoint securely on any smartphone or tablet.

Here are some of the key features of SharePoint2Go:

BYOD-ready (Bring your own device) and cross-platform support
Business users increasingly have an expectation that they will be able to bring devices that they purchase and use in their private lives in to the workplace and expect to be able to connect with enterprise applications, like corporate email, CRM and their SharePoint environment.

Whether your business has a Bring your own Device policy or a multiple mobile platform and device policy, SharePoint2Go is ready to provide access to your corporate SharePoint environment on any mobile device (and Apple Mac computers).

Read more about how SharePoint2Go and BYOD here: http://www.azurati.com/solutions/cios-and-it-professionals/byod

Mobile security
Concern over mobile security is the number one concern cited by CIOs and the main factor that is preventing the deployment of mobile applications for enterprise use.  That is why Azurati has made mobile security a cornerstone of its enterprise mobile proposition.  SharePoint2Go offers multiple authentication options (from 2-factor and SAML tokens, to forms and basic authentication).  Additionally, the SharePoint2Go mobile environment is protected by 256-bit encryption and a zero footprint policy, meaning that no residual content or data is left on the mobile device, so that information security cannot be compromised if the device is misplaced or stolen.

For more information on Azurati’s mobile security options, click here:  http://www.azurati.com/solutions/cios-and-it-professionals/mobile-security

Mobile optimized user experience
SharePoint2Go automatically renders the user interface design so that it is optimized for the smartphone or tablet being used, making sure that the mobile SharePoint user experience is consistent across different platforms and form factors.

Branding and customization
SharePoint2Go enterprise edition customers are able to brand and customize the SharePoint2Go interface – a small feature that can have a big impact on brand communications, particularly for customer-facing staff.

V-Parts™: support for custom SharePoint Web Parts
Many SharePoint environments include custom developed WebParts, or apps that provide views or access to other information, data and content sources, like:

  • Company staff contact directory
  • weather
  • CRM pipleline
  • Management reports
  • ERP (SAP, Oracle or Dynamics) financial data

SharePoint2Go is unique in that it allows custom developed SharePoint WebParts to be converted in to mobile viewable V-Parts™ so that they can be accessed by mobile users via SharePoint2Go on any smartphone or tablet.

Central user management
Managing hundreds, thousands or even tens of thousands of users with SharePoint2Go is painless through the solution’s central user management and administration console.

Mobile user administrators can manage and administer user accounts from their mobile device or from a standard desktop browser.  Deploying SharePoint2Go can also be conducted easily by central admistrators.

Visit www.azurati.com for more information and to request a free 30 day trial of SharePoint2Go.

Here is what some others have to say about our news:

V3 http://www.v3.co.uk/v3-uk/news/2180349/azurati-aims-improve-sharepoint-ipad-smartphone-users
Computer Business Review http://cloudplatforms.cbronline.com/news/azurati-unveils-sharepoint2go-300512
SC Magazine http://www.scmagazineuk.com/sharepoint-on-your-mobile-courtesy-of-azurati/article/243144/
CMS Wire http://www.cmswire.com/cms/mobile/azurati-addresses-mobile-sharepoint-security-concerns-with-sharepoint2go-015816.php