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Users Look For Mobility Best Practices At Frost & Sullivan Mobile & Wireless 2007

Today I am blogging from Frost & Sullivan Mobile & Wireless Enterprise 2007 in sunny Indian Wells, California (just outside Palm Springs). We've got carriers, vendors and, most important, end-users all gathered here to talk mobility at the Grand Hyatt Champions Resort. The big theme of my discussions so far has been the lack of best practices f
Today I am blogging from Frost & Sullivan Mobile & Wireless Enterprise 2007 in sunny Indian Wells, California (just outside Palm Springs). We've got carriers, vendors and, most important, end-users all gathered here to talk mobility at the Grand Hyatt Champions Resort. The big theme of my discussions so far has been the lack of best practices for mobilizing applications beyond e-mail.Mobile e-mail is almost a given with the speakers and attendees. Most companies have either deployed mobile e-mail or plan to shortly. The market leaders are well-established and there are best practices in place for most mobile e-mail installations.

Where things get murky is when enterprises look to move beyond push e-mail. There are end-users here with interesting deployments, but most of them seem like custom installations. Everyone is eager to learn more about real-life case studies in the hopes that they'll stumble upon potential best practices for their own needs.

I have noticed a few things so far. Primarily, vendors are eager to leverage two desktop enterprise trends -- SOA, Web services, and Enterprise 2.0 (the use of Web 2.0 technologies in the enterprise) -- for their mobile products. The hope is that if SOA and Enterprise 2.0 services live up to the hype, extending these services to mobile devices will be relatively easy. This would, in theory, open up the path to the fully mobile enterprise in short time.

The primary issue with this approach is that enterprises remain wary of Web 2.0 technologies on their networks. While some standards, like SOA, are rapidly going mainstream, Enterprise 2.0 still has a way to go.

End-users are definitely eager to learn more. They want best practices not only so they can better plan their mobile strategies but also so they can more easily pitch their mobile initiatives inside their companies. CIOs and IT managers trying to go mobile, especially with any deployment that goes beyond mobile e-mail, face a big internal fight for resources. Not only do they face the challenge of proving the business case they also have to deal with the lack of established best practices. Without best practices, these CIOs have to fight twice as hard to win the approval they need.