Monday, February 28, 2011

Field Mobility News Weekly - Week of February 28, 2011

Kevin’s Field Mobility News Weekly is an online newsletter made up of the most interesting news and articles related to field mobility that I run across each week.  I am specifically targeting information that reflects market data and trends.

Also read Mobile Retailing News Weekly
Also read Mobile Money News Weekly
Also read Mobility News Weekly
Also read M2M News Monthly

A hand-held scanner that can detect cancer at a patient’s bedside using just a speck of tissue has been created by scientists from Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-02-23/harvard-scientists-create-hand-held-device-to-detect-cancer-at-bedside.html

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The highly competitive handset-based mobile resource management market is expected to grow to $2.33 billion by 2016 inside North America.

http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/9a45fc/north_american_mobile_resource_management_mrm

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Thermo Fisher Scientific has launched a new version of its handheld TruScan analyser that not only increases the speed with which the device can identify chemicals, but also broadens the range of compounds it can handle.

Building Compliance Features into Your Enterprise Mobility Solution, Part 2

Monitoring activities
This is Part 2 in this series on building compliance features into enterprise mobility solutions.  You can read Part 1 here.  This article looks at ways to configure best practices and other compliance requirements into mobile applications.

Sales and Marketing

It has been demonstrated many times that the trusted service technician that is standing in a customer's kitchen is a far better sales person than an unknown telephone sales person calling at dinner time. So how can you build processes into mobile applications that help your field services engineers be as effective as possible selling products and services?  Wouldn't it be nice if there was an automatic prompt that told the field services engineer what to discuss with each customer?

I have personally purchased extended maintenance warranties from my own HVAC service man several times over the past few years. They show me how I can save money and get better maintenance by being on the plan. I trust the experience of my service technician.

Mobile Enterprise Applications

When companies first begin considering an enterprise strategy for mobility, they often do not consider the role and value “compliance” layers can play. Even mobility vendors have not yet realized the true value. For the most part, enterprises are still thinking of mobile applications as a way to provide quick and mobile visibility to reports, notifications, approval processes, email messages and to replace paper forms. These are all good features, but there is much more that can be accomplished with mobile enterprise applications than has often been considered.

Building Compliance Features into Your Enterprise Mobility Solution, Part 1

uboatPeriscope
One of the many challenges that companies have is managing a mobile workforce that is often working on remote and distant jobsites.  Many important parts of the business can be impacted by how the mobile workforce does their job while in these environments.  This article will discuss how mobile enterprise applications, with integrated compliance monitoring and prompting, can help companies manage remote and mobile work forces.

Customer Service in Remote Locations

The experience the customer has with your company is directly determined by how they are treated by the company representative they meet.  Often the onsite worker is the only face to face interaction the customer ever has with a person from your company.  The way the customer is treated and the services that are preformed can make all the difference between a good and bad experience and referral business.  How do you ensure that best practices are being followed in remote worksites?

Jobsite Safety

Jobsites can often be dangerous.  There may be safety issues and safety regulations that must be followed.  There are often specific processes that must be followed to reduce risks and to provide the safest working conditions possible for the workers and other people around the jobsite.

Legal Liabilities

There are many risks that must be considered.  If a jobsite is not properly prepared for safety and an accident happens, the company responsible for the work may be liable.  How do you ensure your workforce follows the appropriate processses, does mandated tasks and documents these steps to reduce risks?  Can a mobile device be used?

Best Practices

It is often the case that companies train their employees to do what is considered best practices within their company and industry.  These best practices can be at the core of a company’s competitive advantage.  How does a manager ensure that best practices are being followed on remote jobsites where there is no onsite supervision?  Best practices might be the difference between running an profitable operation and an unprofitable operation.

Read Part 2 of this article.



***************************************************
Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Disclosure: I am an independent mobility analyst, consultant and blogger. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Rapid SAP Mobilization for the Enterprise Webinar

Preparing for the effort
SAP Services partner, Smartsoft Mobile Solutions has invited me to share my research on how best to prepare for implementing enterprise mobility in an upcoming webinar on March 8, 2011 at 11:00 AM ET.  Following my presentation, the Smartsoft Mobile team will present an overview of their experiences and knowledge gained through work on major SAP mobilization projects.

Topics to be covered include:

1. Trends in SAP Mobilization

2. Best Practice:  Mobile Engagement Methodology

3. Rapid Mobile Solution Deployment

4. Five Ways to Optimize your ROI

You are invited to join this webinar by registering here.

***************************************************
Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility group on Linkedin:
http://www.linkedin.com/groups?about=&gid=2823585&trk=anet_ug_grppro

Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility analyst, consultant and blogger. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

M2M and SAP Enterprise Mobility

I have a bandwagon.  When I get on it, I shout that enterprise mobility and M2M communications will quickly merge.  I published hp_cense_globe2an article earlier today about Zia Yusuf, former SAP EVP, and his new company Streetline that perfectly demonstrates the combination of mobile and M2M technologies.  Streetline’s parking sensors report the availability of a parking spot to an iPhone app.

Machines talking to machines and then sharing that information with mobile applications are the wave of the future.  Today, Redbox (kiosk DVD movie distributors) has their computerized and M2M enabled red metal kiosks communicate with your smartphone.  You can open a smartphone Redbox application and query the availability in inventory of a particular movie within a specific distance from your location.  The GPS on your smartphone tells Redbox your location and it queries each of its metal distribution kiosks for inventory levels and reports back to your smartphone app.

Let’s now take a look at some of the session titles at an upcoming M2M conference as they hint at the relevance and importance of M2M:
  • M2M for Public Services and Smart Cities
  • Automotive M2M, Asset Tracking, and Telemetry
  • Embedded Networking Systems in the Smart Home and Office

M2M communications impacts, public services, cities, assets, vehicles, homes and offices.  Sounds pretty ubiquitous to me.

SAP is also now involved in various parts of the M2M and smart grid discussion.  Here is a recent press release about an SAP whitepaper titled, SAP Leads the Charge for Smart Grid Adoption in Europe


If you question the importance of this kind of technology here is the value as described in SAP’s press release on the paper, “the pervasive application of digital information and communication technologies can help the European Union achieve its 2020 goals of increased energy efficiency, lower carbon emissions, integration of renewables and greater energy security…”  Is there a nobler goal or mission?


SAP’s commitment to this technology area is highlighted in this press release excerpt, "At SAP, we are deeply committed to a leadership role in the development and application of ICT (information and communication technologies) tools and technologies able to turn the smart grid vision into reality…”

Webalo-Benedict-Banner


Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility group on Linkedin:
http://www.linkedin.com/groups?about=&gid=2823585&trk=anet_ug_grppro

Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Former SAP EVP is Solving Headaches with Mobile and M2M Technologies

Zia Yusuf
Today Zia Yusuf is CEO of Streetline, a San Francisco company.  This former SAP EVP is showing up all over the media these days.  Why?  His new company provides some very interesting mobile and M2M (machine-to-machine) technologies that show real time parking availability on smartphones.

What does his solution consists of?
  • Battery-powered sensors (M2M) in parking spaces
  • Receiver
  • Data center in Dallas, Texas
  • $1.99 Mobile Parker iPhone application
Here is how it appears to work - Yusuf convinces various municipal governments on the benefits of using Streetline’s solution.  These benefits include:
  • Reduces fuel used searching for parking spots
  • Reduces the time spent searching for a parking spot
  • Reduces neighborhood traffic
  • Increased driving safety (not distracted looking for parking spots)
  • Provides directions to available parking spots
Once approved, Streetline’s battery-powered sensors are installed in parking spots.  The sensors communicate with the nearby receiver (reporting whether the parking spot is empty or occupied), which connects to the data center in Texas, which in turn connects to iPhone applications everywhere.  The mobile app then shows the number of open parking spaces on any given street and directs you to them via Google Maps.

Jefferson Graham in a USA TODAY article reports that, “IBM in 2010 named Streetline the 'Global Entrepreneur of the year,' after it won several competitions IBM staged to look for companies working on a 'smarter planet.'"

I write about both mobile solutions and M2M (machine-to-machine) communications.  This solution utilizes both, so it wins my favorite mobile solution of the day!

Congratulations Zia!  I knew there was an afterlife.Angel

Whitepaper of Note: Unlocking the Value of Enterprise Mobility

Mobility News Weekly - Week of February 21, 2011

Kevin's Mobility News Weekly is an online newsletter made up of the most interesting news and articles related to enterprise mobility that I run across each week.  I am specifically targeting information that reflects market data and trends.

Also read Field Mobility News Weekly
Also read Mobile Money News Weekly
Also read Mobile Retailing News Weekly
Also read M2M News Monthly

Enterprise mobility will be the biggest trend in tech this year, according to Forrester, with private app stores popping up to simplify mobile app overload.

http://www.cio.com/article/661863/Enterprise_Mobility_in_2011_Keeping_Apps_and_Phones_Under_Control

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Sprint and Good Technology have announced a partnership to provide business grade security and full device management features on Sprint's lineup of popular Android devices that business customers want most.

http://www.androidcentral.com/sprint-partners-good-technology-provide-android-based-business-solutions

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A new Android app, appropriately titled Route 66 Maps + Navigation, contains a feature called Follow Me that allows real drivers to follow virtual cars turn for turn.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

SAP PCN Webcast on Mobile Device Management

MDMI wanted to share information about an upcoming SAP PCN webcast on mobile device management that I will be participating in at 2 PM ET on March 2, 2011. Here is an excerpt from the SAP PCN's official invitation.

LEARN HOW YOU CAN BETTER MANAGE ENTERPRISE MOBILITY

Learn Directly from SAP and Industry Experts About Key Device Management Aspects of Enterprise Mobility

Webinar Highlights
  • The case for mobile device management
  • What the Afaria mobile device management solution brings to the table
  • Strategies for managing your enterprise usage of mobile devices such as iOS, Android, and Blackberry
  • Deploying and integrating with Afaria
Panelists

Kevin Benedict
Kevin Benedict is an SAP mentor volunteer, blogger, mobile and M2M industry analyst, and SAP Topic Leader for enterprise mobility.  He is a popular enterprise-mobility consultant, writer, and speaker on subjects related to mobile enterprise. Kevin is an entrepreneur and consultant on enterprise mobility. 

James Naftel
James Naftel is an Afaria product manager at Sybase, an SAP company. In this position, James drives product strategy for Afaria, the market-leading mobile-device- management solution from Sybase. His areas of focus include mobile-device software and asset management, identity and access management, and threat management.

Sam Lakkundi
Sam Lakkundi is an enterprise-mobility architect and a “SWAT” team member at Sybase, an SAP company. He has 15 years' experience working directly with customers that employ a wide range of technologies including client server, database, application server, and mobile engineering.

Registration link:
http://bit.ly/hhMiUq



***************************************************
Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility group on Linkedin:
http://www.linkedin.com/groups?about=&gid=2823585&trk=anet_ug_grppro

Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Mobile Retailing News Weekly - Week of February 21, 2011

Kevin's Mobile Retailing News Weekly is an online newsletter that is made up of the most interesting news, articles and links related to mobile retailing applications and mobile marketing applications that I run across each week. I am specifically targeting market size and market trend information.

Also read Field Mobility News Weekly
Also read Mobile Money News Weekly
Also read Mobility News Weekly
Also read M2M News Monthly

A number of blogs have pointed us to news that mobile payment company Square is dropping the .15 cents per transaction charge for any business using its mobile payments device and service.  Square previously charged 2.75 percent of each transaction amount plus a flat .15 cents per transaction fee.

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13846_3-20035055-62.html

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Google searches conducted on mobile phones centering on shopping-related keywords grew more than 300 percent from January 2010 to January 2011, reports a new Google study on holiday shopping.

http://www.internetretailer.com/2011/02/17/holiday-shoppers-smartphones-search-and-researchand-buy

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A forecast from Yankee Group predicts the worldwide transaction value of mobile payments will total $984 billion by 2014, up from $162 billion last year.

http://finchannel.com/Main_News/Tech/81424_eMarketer%3A_Mobile_Payments_Take_Hold_Around_the_World/

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At the end of 2010 there were over 5.2 billion mobile connections globally – more than three times as many connections as there are PCs in the world. Mobile phone subscriptions continue to rise, making mobile phones the most rapidly adopted technology in history.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Meet Me in Brussels at The Enterprise Mobility Exchange!


Meet Me in Brussels!
I have had the good fortune to be invited to attend and speak at The Enterprise Mobility Exchange in Brussels this year.  It runs May 9th-11th.

Here is the official description:

Equipping your field workforce with mobile technology to deliver maximum profit, productivity and customer service excellence.

The 2011 Enterprise Mobility Exchange is the leading invitation only networking event for businesses actively purchasing and implementing mobile technology for their workforce.  This unique Director's forum will bring together the real decision makers from field service organisations from across Europe.

Attend the 2011 Enterprise Mobility Exchange and:
  • Hear from market leaders about cutting edge developments in mobile technology and discover how to apply this to your own business objectives.
  • Catch up with peers and make new business connections through a series of networking opportunities.
  • Learn from the experiences and challenges other key decision makers face in implementing mobile technology and use this to improve your own enterprise mobility strategy.
  • Hear from innovative organisations who have successfully implemented mobility solutions and find out where they plan to invest in the year ahead.
To request your invitation or to find out more visit www.enterprisemobilityexchange.com/kblog

I know SAP ecosystem members Sybase, ClickSoftware and Syclo will all be there.

***************************************************
Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility group on Linkedin:
http://www.linkedin.com/groups?about=&gid=2823585&trk=anet_ug_grppro

Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Field Mobility News Weekly - Week of February 21, 2011

Kevin’s Field Mobility News Weekly is an online newsletter made up of the most interesting news and articles related to field mobility that I run across each week.  I am specifically targeting information that reflects market data and trends.

Also read M2M News Monthly
Also read Mobile Retailing News Weekly
Also read Mobile Money News Weekly
Also read Mobility News Weekly

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Las Vegas Police have apprehended the suspect in the December 2010 robbery at the Bellagio Resort & Casino resulting in stolen chips whose face value totaled nearly $1.5 million, according to Singularity Hub.  RFID technology may have helped police find the thief.

http://www.rfidnews.org/2011/02/14/rfid-may-have-lead-to-arrest-in-casino-heist

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The highly competitive handset based mobile resource management market is expected to grow to $2.33 billion by 2016 in North America.

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20110216006370/en/Research-Markets-Highly-Competitive-Handset-based-Mobile-Resource

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In East Africa, the mobile phone is quickly replacing laptops and modems in terms of enabling workforce mobility.

http://news.idg.no/cw/art.cfm?id=798F8AEB-1A64-67EA-E473B076924D3486

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iPads are being used in construction for quality and field operations.

Enterprise Mobility Challenges from the Experts

Interview, Interview, Interview
In the past several months I have interviewed 15 mobility experts from Australia, Finland, Germany, Sweden, USA, Canada and the UK. I asked each of these experts what were the biggest challenges they were seeing in the enterprise mobility market. These are their answers:

Kimmo Jarvinsivu, Newelo: Usability and integration. If your end-users are not happy about the mobilization possibility, they are not going to use it. And if you can't integrate (and change integration) easily, your information systems will not be up-to-date and information in those is useless. From the corporate point of view, it is important to take into account the fragmented situation in the mobile device market. Corporates need to use existing mobile devices (both personal and corporate owned), but also be prepared for the future (new devices).

Jack Chawla, SAP: In enterprise mobility, we need to make it easier for developers to write mobile apps without having to worry about enterprise security, scalability, data sync, device support, etc. Enterprise developers should be able to write apps as easily as consumer app developers.

Malachy Martin, AMT-Sybex: We all have a 9:00 am to 5:00 pm day job, but what about our 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm personal life? For example, one of the most popular mobile apps in the UK last year was called, Tube Exits. It is a simple but brilliant mobile application that lists all London Underground stations and lines, and tells you which carriage you need to sit in to be able to get off right at the exit. This application offers value to people wanting to get home quickly after work. Consumer driven mobile application like Tube Exits will influence user expectations for enterprise mobility applications. Also, companies must figure out how to accommodate personal liable devices.

Puneet Suppal, SAP: Lack of governance. All the technology is there, but companies need to manage it. I define governance as a comprehensive approach that makes sure the appropriate level of security is implemented, device management, data management, etc. Many companies still must understand the importance of mobile device management. It cannot be over emphasized. The same mobile device (smartphone) often holds both important corporate data and personal data. That means confidential enterprise data is on personal devices. How is that going to be managed? Much of the work people do every day is now on their mobile devices.


Mobile Expert Interview Series: Sybase's James Naftel, Part 2

This is Part 2 in this interview with Sybase's James Naftel, Staff Product Manager for Afaria.  Read Part 1 here.

Kevin: What are some of the biggest challenges you see in mobility today?
James: The number one goal is not to give us all toys (fun mobile devices), but rather to make us more productive. Companies must look at their business and understand how they can really get productivity gains from implementing enterprise mobility solutions. Does it make sense? How will they scale from tens of users to thousands? It is easy to deploy a handful of devices, but what about thousands. How do you secure all of these devices? There are legal obligations to protect personal and corporate data on devices. If social security numbers are on devices, companies must protect this data. All the data in the company is probably accessible by different mobile devices and applications in the company.

Kevin: How are enterprise mobility implementations different from other typical IT projects?
James: Mobile devices are in unsecured locations (homes, cars, restaurants, hotels, beaches, park benches, bars, etc.). Security is a big concern. These devices are mobile and remote. All of this infrastructure outside the firewall is accessing data inside the firewall. You need to think of all the different risk scenarios. You want your developers to be able to develop mobile apps without worrying about security. It should already be solved by the company.

Kevin: What do companies fail to plan for when implementing mobility?
James: 1) How do I scale from ten to thousands of devices? 2) How do I move data back and forth through corporate security? Security folks were often difficult to work with in the past and caused many long delays in mobility projects. They were uncomfortable with mobile data access. It is better now. More IT security teams understand the mobile security issues and how to solve them.

Kevin: What advice do you have for companies just starting down an enterprise mobility path?
James: Plan and have a good idea of your goals. Pick carefully the first apps to mobilize. Have a reason to mobilize. Is it CRM? Understand your goals so you can plan. Think about how you provision devices? Think about device roll-outs. Think about the impact on the help desk.

Kevin: How important is mobile device management and security? [What a set-up!]
James: Critical. People need to protect private and enterprise data. Device management and security is key to succeeding with a project. If you leak information, you are in big trouble and it jeopardizes your entire mobility initiative. You need MDM to run any enterprise project. You cannot scale unless you have MDM.


Kevin: What should people know about Sybase’s Afaria?
James: We try to support all the new devices. We look to support all the devices and platforms that our enterprise customers request. Five years ago, there was a long sales cycle involved in educating companies on the value of mobile security and MDM. However, today companies recognize the need. We are now a core component, rather than an afterthought. App developers should not have to be concerned with security, Afaria will handle that.

Kevin: Where do you see mobility going in 2011?
James: There are a lot of discussions and strategizing going on around tablets. We see a lot of enterprise customers buying tablets now. Companies want to lock down tablets more than smartphones. If fact, companies might have different security requirements for tablets than smartphones. Tablets may be viewed more as a corporate asset than smartphones and have stricter security requirements.

I want to thank James for sharing his thoughts, views and observations with all of us.

Click here to read more in the Mobile Expert Interview Series.


***************************************************
Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility group on Linkedin:
http://www.linkedin.com/groups?about=&gid=2823585&trk=anet_ug_grppro

Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Mobile Expert Interview Series: Sybase’s James Naftel, Part 1

I had the privilege, last week, to interview Sybase’s Staff Product Manager for Afaria, James Naftel.  We are also working together on a mobile device management (MDM) webinar that will be announced later this week.

Note:  As usual, these are not James’ exact words, rather they are my notes from our interview.  The reason I use my notes is that I cannot type fast enough to keep up with most conversations, plus our conversations often digress or become more expansive than readers would like to read.  As a result, I note key phrases, opinions, advice, thoughts and write them up concisely.

Kevin: What are your current roles and responsibilities?
James: Staff Product Manager.  I drive product strategy and partnerships around Afaria.  I am also involved in working with all the different mobile device manufacturers.

Kevin: How long have you been working with Afaria?
James: Twelve years. The first five years were as a developer.

Kevin:  How many times has the company been sold or had a name change during those 12 years?
James: Let’s see, Xcellenet, Sterling Commerce, Afaria, then back to Xcellenet, then iAnywhere/Sybase and finally SAP.

Kevin:  Was Afaria always about MDM (mobile device management)?
James:  We first started out working on a retail product called Remote Ware which was designed to help stores download or upload sales numbers.  It evolved from there.

Kevin: Where is your office located?
James: Alpharetta, Georgia.


Kevin: What mobile device(s) do you carry?
James: An Android smartphone, an iPad, in the past a laptop,  but most days now the iPad is what I take home with me. Some days the Samsung 7 inch Galaxy Tab.

Kevin: What are some of your favorite mobile applications that you have on your mobile device(s)?
James:  Weather, the ESPN app, EverNote, iProcrastinate (task lists).

Kevin: Do you ever use your mobile device to buy things?
James: I use my smartphones mostly for research, not purchasing things. I use my tablets to purchase items.

Kevin: How many computing devices do you have in your home?
James: Six.

Kevin: How long have you been involved in enterprise mobility?
James: Twelve years.  I started working on Afaria right out of college. First, we focused on supporting mobile laptops for companies that had mobile sales force, like pharmaceutical companies.

Kevin: What is different today, than when you started working with enterprise mobility?
James: The devices. Laptops were the primary platforms when I started, now smartphones and tablets.

Kevin: What industries do you see adopting enterprise mobility today?
James: Everybody. Two years ago it was industries like utilities, energy and cable companies with large field service organizations. Now everybody is implementing enterprise mobility.

Kevin: What were some the most surprising trends you saw in mobility during 2010?
James:  This year (2011) it is Nokia partnering with Microsoft. I really thought Nokia would back Android. However, during last year (2010), it was Android’s success. I have 30-40 devices on my desk today, and many of them are Android devices.  Another surprise, companies allowing the use of personal devices at work. Sybase lets employees use personal devices, but now many others do as well.  We had to refocus more attention to issues related to securing personal devices with corporate data.



**************************************************
Kevin Benedict,Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility group on Linkedin:

Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Skanska Optimizes Mobile Workforce Management

I read this week that Skanska, askanska 2 leading global construction company, is implementing optimized scheduling, location based services and mobility to run on the Apple iOS Platform.  It seems that Skanska UK’s Utilities Operating Unit will run ClickSoftware’s Mobile Enterprise Application on Apple smartphones and tablets running iOS.  Skanska provides telecommunications, gas, power and water companies with infrastructure and asset management services.  Their goal is to drive efficiency, improve customer service, enhance workforce productivity and reduce the impact on the environment.

Of critical importance to Skanska’s clients and prospects is the ability to drive productivity without compromising customer service by quickly blending in ‘real time’ planned and reactive emergency work. To achieve this, Skanska is working to optimize the deployment and control of hundreds of engineers in the field.

Of particular importance to Skanska is the ability to operate on Apple iOS-based devices such as iPhone and iPad.  ClickSoftware, an SAP partner, will provide the ClickMobile solution to steer field engineers through relevant information capture and service processes via their iPhone and iPad mobile devices. This will include site schematic diagrams, safety procedures, project plans and customer and asset historical information.  It also provides a two-way conduit allowing engineers to record important service level information in the field on their Apple devices to be fed back to the enterprise, and where appropriate the end client.

The optimal scheduling of crews will enable Skanska to offer very competitive Service Level commitments to clients. They will now automatically consider engineers’ skills, location, inventory, capital equipment and current workload and then balance these factors to deploy Skanska’s engineering crews in the most efficient manner. It will also continuously re-optimize the schedule in real-time to manage the work that will be reactive – continuously reshuffling the planned work with flexible time windows.

ClickLocate will monitor the engineers’ GPS location, providing the dispatch team with clear, real-time visibility of field operations, and allowing real time optimization based on actual engineer location.

ClickAnalyze will continually receive operational field data and provide intelligence on SLA compliance, engineers’ performance and areas of skills shortage. This can then be used to proactively improve future services and operations.

ClickSoftware has many utility and telecom customers, in fact, utility customers account for 40 percent of revenue.  Their customers include Thames Water and Scottish Water in the UK, and PG&E, Southern California Edison and Sempra Energy in the United States. Telecom customers, account for 35 percent of revenue and customers include Bell Canada, Deutsche Telekom and Telstra.

Challenges in Enterprise Mobility Today



I recorded and uploaded a new 11 minute Video Comment on what I have learned recently about the challenges in enterprise mobility.  The information in this discussion came from the several dozen mobile experts that I have recently interviewed. So get out the popcorn and soda and pretend to enjoy it!


***************************************************
Kevin Benedict,Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility group on Linkedin:
http://www.linkedin.com/groups?about=&gid=2823585&trk=anet_ug_grppro

Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Kevin’s Mobility News Weekly – Week of February 14, 2011

Kevin's Mobility News Weekly is an online newsletter made up of the most interesting news and articles related to enterprise mobility that I run across each week.  I am specifically targeting information that reflects market data and trends.

Also read Kevin’s Field Mobility News Weekly
Also read Kevin’s Mobile Money News Weekly
Also read Kevin’s Mobile Retailing News Weekly
Also read Kevin’s M2M News Monthly

Mobile operators could be set to reach ‘End of Profit’ in a little over two years, as the costs of building and running their networks exceed the revenues that they are generating, according to a recent forecast.

http://www.telecoms.com/24392/tellabs-death-clock-predicts-end-of-profit-for-mnos/

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Worldwide mobile data traffic is due to increase 26-fold to 75 exabytes annually, says networking giant Cisco.

http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/mobile_data_explosion_75_exabytes_by_2015.php

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Morgan Stanley recently surveyed 50 enterprise CIOs about current and future tablet deployments and came back with some pretty astonishing findings:  21 percent of them are already purchasing tablets for employees and 51 percent expect to begin doing so in the coming year.

http://digitaldaily.allthingsd.com/20110215/tk-4/

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Enterprise mobility is the biggest single trend across tech industry investment and innovation, even outpacing the cloud-computing trend, states a recent Forrester report.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

SAP Enterprise Mobility in the Cloud

Some kinds of solutions just seem 2553555562_9eac4fa7d4naturally suited for being in a cloud centric network. For example, why do companies buy and deploy their own in-house EDI solution and create unique data maps to every supplier or business trading partner in order to exchange EDI data?  This is about as inefficient as possible.  This should be a cloud-based, network centric service, which is why SAP added the SAP Information Interchange (SII) last Spring.  Now all SAP customers can connect their EDI processes once to the SII and have access to all of the other companies that are on the network.

This same kind of scenario is now playing out in enterprise mobility.  Mark Beccue, an analyst with IT market research company ABI Research, says that soon, "Cloud computing will bring unprecedented sophistication to mobile applications."  What does he mean?  Cloud-based mobile applications do not suffer from limits in mobile device battery life, storage capacity or processing abilities. Instead, they have all the power of a server-based computing infrastructure behind them.

If you have all the processing power you can ever want in the cloud, there is less reason (assuming you always have access to the internet) to build native mobile applications that are feature rich.  Just access the power of the cloud and use the mobile device as the UI (user interface) to the cloud.

Kevin’s Mobile Money News Weekly – Week of February 16, 2011

Kevin’s Mobile Money News Weekly is an online newsletter made up of the most interesting news, articles and links related to mobile payments, mobile money, e-wallets, mobile banking and mobile security that I run across each week.  I am specifically targeting market size and market trend information.

Also read Kevin’s Field Mobility News Weekly
Also read Kevin’s M2M News Monthly
Also read Kevin’s Mobile Retailing News Weekly
Also read Kevin’s Mobility News Weekly

Consumers are increasingly becoming more comfortable with mobile banking, payment and shopping to the point where the value of global transactions on the go will jump from $162 billion in 2010 to nearly a $1 trillion by 2014, according to research firm Yankee Group.

http://www.zdnet.com/blog/btl/mobile-transactions-ready-to-ramp-says-report/44791

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Less than a month after rolling out its mobile payment technology across the United States, coffee giant Starbucks says its customers have made 1 million payments via the app-based system -- which stores a virtual Starbucks Card on a mobile phone, for scanning at the register.

http://www.techflash.com/seattle/2011/02/starbucks-a-million-mobile-payments.html

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A microfinance pilot project pioneered in Africa turned into one of the world's most successful mobile banking systems thanks to one woman's bus fare getting stolen. Now the service could make its way to the United Kingdom.

Mobile Expert Interview Series: Mobile X's Hannes Heckner

In this interview I continue my recent focus on learning from mobile experts and thought leaders in Europe.  Hannes Heckner is the CEO of MobileX AG which is headquartered in Munich, Germany.  They have been in business for over 10 years and have about 30 employees.  They have 30 customers with over 6,000 mobile users in the field.  They are now preparing to move to a new office to accommodate significant growth.  They are an SAP partner and over 80 percent of their customers are SAP users.

Note:  This interview consists of a combination of written responses to questions and my notes from our Skype conversations.  I use a similar set of questions with many of my interviews for the purpose of research and analysis.  It is useful to analyze many answers to the same question in order to gain insight into market trends and behaviors.

Kevin: What mobile device(s) do you carry?
Hannes: Laptop, iPhone.

Kevin: What are some of your favorite mobile applications that you have on your mobile device?
Hannes: E-Mail, Contacts and Social Media apps.

Kevin: Do you ever use your mobile device to buy things?
Hannes: No.

Kevin: How many computing devices do you have in your home?
Hannes: Three.

Kevin: How long have you been involved in enterprise mobility?
Hannes: Over 14 years.

Mobile Expert Interview Series: Zenware's Jody Sedrick

I had the good fortune of tracking down mobility expert Jody Sedrick last week and scheduling an interview with him. Jody Sedrick is the CEO of Zenware, a twelve person company that designs, develops and deploys both custom and packaged intelligent mobile applications for SMEs (small to medium sized enterprises). He is responsible for driving business and helping companies understand how mobility can revolutionize their businesses.

Mobility is important to all size companies, and I wanted to interview Jody to learn what he is hearing and learning in the SME mobility markets.

Note: These are not Jody’s exact words, rather my notes from our interview.

Kevin: What mobile device(s) do you carry?
Jody: An iPhone, MacBook Pro and an iPad.

Kevin: What are some of your favorite mobile applications that you have on your mobile device?
Jody: Pandora, TweetDeck, Linkedin, Google Maps, EverNote.

Kevin: Do you use your mobile device to buy things?
Jody: No, but I do a lot of product research on them.

Starbucks Drives Mobile Technology with One Million Mobile Payments in a Month

Starbucks Card Mobile Payment
Starbucks is reporting that between January 19 and February 15 of 2011 over one million payments were made at Starbucks locations using the new Starbucks Card Mobile Payment application.  This mobile app provides the following features:
  • Lets you pay for drinks and food by having your mobile phone screen scanned at the counter
  • Lets you view your balance
  • Lets you check your Stars in the My Starbucks Rewards program
  • Lets you reload your card
  • Find the nearest store
With mobile payment accepted at more than 6,800 company-operated Starbucks stores and over 1,000 Target locations, there are many locations to use this mobile app.

The Starbucks experience is all about routine, consistency and comfort.  Having 7,800 locations accept and support this same mobile application is a powerful change agent.  I predict that this move by Starbucks will be seen as the launching point for mobile payments among us in the masses.

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On another note, Smartsoft Mobile Solutions, an SAP services partner, is currently working with some of the largest retailers in the world on mobile retailing projects.  These are B2C (business-to-consumer) mobile retailing applications.  Mobile retailing is not all they do, but they have some very interesting wins in this market.

***************************************************
Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility group on Linkedin:
http://www.linkedin.com/groups?about=&gid=2823585&trk=anet_ug_grppro

Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Mobile Phones, Cameras and Enterprise Mobility

Touch Inspect
I believe that enterprises are not yet taking full advantage of the cameras and video capabilities on mobile devices.  I also believe the saying, "A picture paints a thousand words."  The attached image of the fire hydrant as seen in the mobile application, Touch Inspect from Mobile Epiphany demonstrates how a quick photo, with quick photo editing tools, can communicate a great deal of information.


I also predict that as more applications like the iPhone's FaceTime become available you will see more mobile applications within the services sector integrate them into their solutions.  Not only can these digital cameras be used to record work, but connected to a GPS enabled devices, they can help document compliance, monitor SLAs, help in training and provide real-time and onsite expert advice.


This 2nd image demonstrates how I believe a junior service technician could utilize a live video feed to communicate with an experienced expert back at the office.  The expert can watch the live video feed from the remote jobsite and quickly help the less experienced service technician complete their work.


What do you think?  Do you think digital cameras and video capabilities on mobile devices are still under utilized?


Whitepaper of Note: Networked Field Services



***************************************************
Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility group on Linkedin:
http://www.linkedin.com/groups?about=&gid=2823585&trk=anet_ug_grppro

Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Kevin's Mobile Retailing News Weekly - Week of February 15, 2011

Kevin's Mobile Retailing News Weekly is an online newsletter that is made up of the most interesting news, articles and links related to mobile retailing applications and mobile marketing applications that I run across each week. I am specifically targeting market size and market trend information.

Also read Kevin’s Field Mobility News Weekly
Also read Kevin’s M2M News Monthly
Also read Kevin’s Mobile Money News Weekly
Also read Kevin’s Mobility News Weekly

Google’s strong fourth quarter earnings proved that it is now firmly ensconced in e-commerce, and also showed that, with its Android operating system and related apps, it is smoothly transitioning to the mobile world.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/21/technology/21google.html?src=busln

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Mobile commerce may be maturing at a quicker rate than many experts have predicted, according to a report from Adobe Scene7. Sixty-two percent of consumers with web connected mobile devices have purchased merchandise in a wide range of product categories using their mobile devices.

http://www.internetretailer.com/2011/02/10/62-consumers-have-purchased-goods-mobile-device

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Three quarters of U.S. brands surveyed by the Association of National Advertisers/Mobile Marketing Association say they plan to up their spending on mobile marketing initiatives by some 60 percent this year, while close to 90 percent will deploy mobile marketing initiatives.

http://brand-e.biz/could-do-better-on-mobile-marketing_11526.html

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By the end of 2011, an estimated one billion people around the world will be connected to the mobile web and 50 percent of all Americans will own a smartphone.



The Biggest Challenges in Enterprise Mobility Today


On Thursday, February 17th, at 1 PM EST, I will be opening a webinar with a discussion on the biggest challenges in enterprise mobility today.  Not just my opinions, but the opinions of over a dozen mobility experts that I have interviewed recently. I will be the first presenter, and then handing it over to Steve Levy, CEO of Pyxis Mobile to discuss The Latest Thinking and Strategies for Deploying Flexible Mobile Solutions - The Four Big Issues for Mobilizing SAP and Other Enterprise Systems.I invite you to participate by registering here.


***************************************************
Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility group on Linkedin:
http://www.linkedin.com/groups?about=&gid=2823585&trk=anet_ug_grppro

Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Mobile Expert Interview Series: 10seconds Software's Greg Donaldson, Part 2

Greg Donaldson
This is Part 2 of an interview with Greg Donaldson of 10seconds Software.  You can read Part 1 here.

Kevin: What do companies fail to plan for when implementing mobility?
Greg: First, let me explain that we provide both a desktop and a mobile version of our software. It seems that companies still use the desktop the most. Consider the entire work week. If a manager is traveling for two days out of five, they may need a mobile application for two days, but they would rather use their laptop or desktop during the three days in the office. A company needs to think of the entire work week. Many of our applications are simplified versions of an ERP. Managers would rather access SAP through our simplified interfaces. They don’t need to see the entire SAP ERP, just the parts they need to see in order to do their jobs.

Kevin: What advice do you have for companies just starting down an enterprise mobility path?
Greg: 1) Understand how you will connect to devices and how you will secure them, 2) Start with a simple mobile application and get an easy win (a good success), 3) Focus on a great user experience, and 4) Look for a packaged app (or off the shelf) to start. Building a complete enterprise quality mobile application yourself requires a huge amount of effort, and much of it has no business value for a one time development project.  Find a packaged application for a quick and easy implementation.

Kevin: How important is mobile device management and security?
Greg: Very important. Have the right infrastructure in place to protect your data before you implement mobility. There are thousands of ways to connect to a back end system, so the company first needs to decide how they want to connect.

Mobile Expert Interview Series: 10seconds Software's Greg Donaldson, Part 1

10seconds Software's
Greg Donaldson
I want to introduce Greg Donaldson from 10seconds Software to you. He is the Founder and Director of the Australian mobility company, 10seconds Software, a company he started two years ago and now serves as the chief solution architect.

Greg has been working around enterprise mobility for the past five years and has spent much of his career working in the banking industry, but also has experience working in the RFID and barcode space.

Note:  These are not Greg's exact words, rather my notes from our interview.

Kevin: What mobile device(s) do you carry?
Greg: I ride my mountain bike to work and carry my four year old daughter to school on a bike seat so am careful what I carry. I carry an iPhone, iPad and a Dell laptop.

Kevin: What are some of your favorite mobile applications that you have on your mobile device?
Greg: My Twitter app is used constantly, and so is WhatsApp (chatting app), Viber (VoIP app).

Kevin: Do you use your mobile device to buy things?
Greg: Yes, I buy music and apps.

Kevin: How many computing devices do you have in your home?
Greg: Four, two laptops, an iPad and an iPhone.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Kevin’s Field Mobility News Weekly – Week of February 14, 2011

Kevin’s Field Mobility News Weekly is an online newsletter made up of the most interesting news and articles related to field mobility that I run across each week. I am specifically targeting information that reflects market data and trends.

Also read Kevin’s M2M News Monthly
Also read Kevin’s Mobile Retailing News Weekly
Also read Kevin’s Mobile Money News Weekly
Also read Kevin’s Mobility News Weekly

The City of Sacramento recently spent over $100,000 on a GPS fleet management system. Many tax payers questioned if the new fleet tracking system was a luxury or a necessity? Turns out, that using the fleet management system, the City identified ways to cut fuel costs by over $60,000 in just one month.

http://www.fieldtechnologies.com/city-of-sacramento-cuts-60000-per-month-in-gas-costs-with-gps-fleet-management-system/

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Last week, Lehigh announced a deal with StarPath Technologies for a system that will allow students to track the locations of university buses on their phones or computers.

http://media.www.thebrownandwhite.com/media/storage/paper1233/news/2011/02/11/News/New-Gps.Tracking.On.Buses.Benefits.Students-3975741.shtml

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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced last week that it has given 510(k) clearance to a new mobile radiology application developed by Cleveland-based MIM Software. The software, called Mobile MIM, allows physicians to view medical images on Apple's iPhone and iPad mobile devices.

Weird, Odd and Strange Mobility Series: Cameras in Skull, Wireless Confessions and Best Bathrooms

The professor installed the video camera in the back of his skull, but the camera caused awkward social interactions and was painful.  It was like having eyes in the back of your head, but no one wanted him around.

http://www.engadget.com/2011/02/10/nyu-professor-unsurprisingly-removes-camera-from-the-back-of-his/

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The Catholic Church (in Indiana, USA) has now approved a mobile confession application for the iPhone.  The mobile application was developed with the help of Catholic priests, and enables Catholics to keep track of their sins.  It even helps identify possible sins based on a user’s age, sex and marital status.  I wonder if you can password protect it?  I hope so.  I wonder if this involves real time connectivity, or is it synchronized in batch?  What happens if there is an untimely accident before the data is synchronized?

http://unplugged.rcrwireless.com/index.php/20110208/app-corner/6921/catholic-church-approves-confession-iphone-app/

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Mobile Expert Interview Series: Acando's Hans Nygaard, Part 2

Hans Nygaard
This is Part 2 in of my interview with Hans Nygaard.  You can read Part 1 here.

Kevin: What are some of the most surprising trends you are saw in mobility in 2010?
Hans: Personally I have to say that I am surprised by the fact that the large vendors (SAP, Sybase, Oracle, QlikView) still push hard on BI solutions for smartphones. The UI/UX doesn’t lend itself to a task like that. It looks sexy, but if you are running an important business function, why would you need to see dashboards, cut and slice BW data etc. on a 3.5” screen? They are pushing a segment that is served (well) by laptops with 3G wireless – and a keyboard!

A second surprising trend for me was that most companies emerged from the financial crisis ready to take on new IT projects. Yet a surprisingly small number of companies (in Scandinavia) have enterprise mobility on the agenda. In transportation, supply chain, field service, maintenance, QA, etc., we continue to demonstrate dramatic business cases, yet many top managers seem unaware of the gold lying at their feet! I think that the processes mobility can improve are either not core to the company (i.e. internal maintenance and inspection) or not sexy enough for decision makers to bother about! Often the process ownership is in middle management, and it’s not in their job description to be visionary.

Kevin: What are some of the biggest challenges you see in mobility today?
Hans: Awareness in the enterprise market. Mobility is core to many companies, but not yet on management's agenda. Also, most of our enterprise users own a smartphone and are pampered by snazzy app stores, where apps compete in looking sexy and offer the best UX. To offer similarly appealing enterprise apps is a real challenge and user adoption and project success depends on it.

Kevin: How are enterprise mobility implementations different from other typical IT projects?
Hans: We work exclusively in the SAP market space. Mobile projects often fail to reach their success criteria when done exclusively by the SAP project organization; too much ASAP (accelerated SAP Implementation methodology) does not work well for SOA environment.

Kevin: What do companies fail to plan for when implementing mobility?
Hans: If they have no SOA experience, they fail to realize how many links there are in the mobility business ‘service chain’, from cell phone plans to VPN certificates over middleware application management, help desk training, etc. Most are used to operating just the monolithic ERP and office apps and their respective GUIs.

Mobile Expert Interview Series: Acando's Hans Nygaard, Part 1

 Acando's Hans Nygaard
I recently had the privelege of interviewing Hans Nygaard from Acando, a consultancy company with over 1,000 employees in six European countries.  SAP is one of Acando's most important partners.

Hans is the Manager for Mobile Solutions and focuses most of his time on blue collar and field services kinds of mobile projects.  They work on a lot of 100-200 user projects, but are currently working on a large deployment that includes 5,000 service technicians in 14 countries.

Hans has been working in the SAP ecosystem since 2003 and on SAP related mobility projects since 2007.  He has a wife and two kids and lives 45 minutes outside of Copenhagen.

Note:  This interview consists of both written and verbal responses from Hans.

Kevin:  Since you have been involved in SAP enterprise mobility since 2007, what are your thoughts about SAP's acquisition of Sybase in 2010?
Hans: I have mixed feelings.  It was a lot of money.  Sybase has great offline and push mobile technology, so that is good, but I am still confused about how Sybase's and SAP's middleware will merge into one mobile middleware solution.

Kevin: What mobile device(s) do you carry?
Hans: iPhone 4, iPad and a laptop (PC).

Thursday, February 10, 2011

MacBook Pro, Safari, Pages and Blogging Headaches

Any Advice?

You may have noticed that I have been struggling with some font and formatting issues this week in my articles.  After a lifetime on PCs, I have purchased a MacBook Pro.  Along with the MacBook Pro, I am trying to use Pages (and Word for Macs) and Safari to access and post to my blogging platform.  I am having many annoying formatting issues.  The Apple environment is introducing all kinds of junk code which is messing up my text formatting.

Any advice? 

***************************************************
Kevin Benedict, Independent Mobile and M2M Industry Analyst, SAP Mentor Volunteer
Phone +1 208-991-4410
Follow me on Twitter @krbenedict
Join the SAP Enterprise Mobility group on Linkedin:
http://www.linkedin.com/groups?about=&gid=2823585&trk=anet_ug_grppro

Full Disclosure: I am an independent mobility consultant, mobility analyst, writer and Web 2.0 marketing professional. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.

Kevin’s Mobility News Weekly – Week of February 7, 2011


Kevin's Mobility News Weekly is an online newsletter made up of the most interesting news and articles related to enterprise mobility that I run across each week.  I am specifically targeting information that reflects market data and trends.


Mobile development vendor appMobi has just closed an impressive $6 million round of all angel series B financing to further provide platform as a service tools for developers and others in the mobile ecosystem.


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Tactical Nav is an app that lets a soldier map and plot waypoints on a battlefield, take photos and share coordinates with fellow soldiers and units, direct artillery and call in medevac.


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Despite three years of global financial bleakness, 2010 brought huge growth to mobile/wireless.  Global handset shipments rose to more than 1.3 billion units, over 20 percent of them smartphones.