Feeds

You bought into mobile email - what have you got to show for it?

Have mobiles increased productivity?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top three mobile application threats

Ed Moore, OpenWeb Product Manager, OpenWave Europe

I like the concept of mobile email and carefully make sure I don't have it myself. Thinking time is precious and I find it much harder to think deep thoughts when connected in to the company communication network. Call me if it's urgent or send a text!

There are however plenty of people out there who do need access to their email at all times, in order to work at peak efficiency. Technical support staff, account managers, consultants and freelancers can all nip issues in the bud or leap at new opportunities if suitably equipped and could easily justify the expense. How best to justify? Sales people have the best excuse – just one deal won instead of lost can pay for an entire mobile email infrastructure and whether it's that one single message that clinched it or a series of gentle pushes doesn't matter. So three sums; cost of failure to respond to an emergency, missed opportunities for new business or thirdly time gained through incremental improvements in administration. Approving a travel request, agreeing a pricing quote, denying holiday or selecting chairs for the office can all take you a moment but potentially save others hours in waiting around.

So the benefits are clear but what of the cost? I'd recommend two solutions for mobile email and budgets are the clear delineator.

At a simple level many existing business focused phones can now cope with email standards such as POP3 or IMAP; it may not be pushed to your handset in idle moments but you can get access whenever there's wireless connectivity. Most corporate email platforms can already deliver these standard interfaces so the only tangible cost you're looking at is incremental data charges. For the UK this can now be as little as £10 a month all in so well worth the investment.

At a medium level you have email packages that can use a range of devices to receive pushed email, including offerings from companies such as Visto and Microsoft. These will give more functionality, usually greater speed of access and incur a matching higher cost, especially if a corporate server version is chosen.

Finally at the sophisticated level we have what most mobile workers think of when they imagine mobile email; the elegant and simple ‘fruity' dedicated email devices. These work very well indeed but come at a price in terms of extra service charges. But let's think clearly here; at a price compared to what? If other email solutions then they look expensive but compared to a company car, expense account or pay packet then they are very cheap indeed! At any reasonable salary level then justifying for an individual should be child's play.

Unfortunately making email mobile does lead people to do at all times what they currently do in the office; continue being interrupted all the time, be bombarded with Spam and jokes from friends, gossip and waste time. To these you can add those mobile generated emails that everyone loathes; "yes, good" (what is?), "I agree" (to what?), "at customer" (so?), all finished with that automated rider "Sent from a Fruitberry".

I'll go back to thinking time...®

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

More from The Register

next story
Yorkshire cops fail to grasp principle behind BT Fon Wi-Fi network
'Prevent people that are passing by to hook up to your network', pleads plod
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them
It's almost as though pr0n was actually rather popular
Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530
Say it with us: I'm King of the Landfill-ill-ill-ill
All those new '5G standards'? Here's the science they rely on
Radio professor tells us how wireless will get faster in the real world
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
US freemium mobile network eyes up Europe
FreedomPop touts 'free' calls, texts and data
Oh girl, you jus' didn't: Level 3 slaps Verizon in Netflix throttle blowup
Just hook us up to more 10Gbps ports, backbone biz yells in tit-for-tat spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.