Manufacturers plan to take advantage of increasing interest in Android in the office by improving security
Manufacturers of Android smartphones are attempting to push harder into the business market in a bid to take on Apple's iOS and to sink BlackBerry in the sector.
Android smartphone OEMs are taking advantage of a solid presence among consumers and mobile business users to drive more business-style smartphone purchases and to expand the use of Android in the enterprise, according to a new study.
ABI Research predicts that shipment revenues from Android smartphones used by mobile business customers will grow from $54 billion in 2013 to over $92 billion globally by the end of 2018.
OEMs are planning on taking advantage of the fact that over 60% of mobile business users are currently using Android by expanding their enterprise-focused portfolios, claimed ABI. One way they are doing that is by improving security on Android devices so businesses are more likely to consider the operating system for employee deployment, said ABI senior analyst, Jason McNicol.
'Despite a significant presence among employees in the workplace, businesses have not allowed or have limited the access of Android devices to enterprise applications and systems,' commented McNicol. 'Fearing loss of this large, high margin market segment, Android OEMs have taken it upon themselves to close these security threats by making Android devices more enterprise ready.'
A mobile device is considered enterprise ready when operating system-embedded features, such as device encryption and VPN connectivity, can be enabled by enterprise mobility vendors. An example includes Samsung KNOX which comes pre-installed on Galaxy S4 smartphones, but requires an enterprise mobility vendor such as Citrix or AirWatch to turn the features on.
ABI practice director, Dan Shey, added: 'Despite the shortcomings associated with Android, OEMs are leveraging the open platform and using key partnerships to provide not only enhanced security features, but a valuable user experience in enterprise ready devices. Samsung is the clear leader but other OEMs, like LG and its GATE solution, have made great advances in their strategies to capture share of the enterprise device market.'