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Four enterprise mobility trends shaping 2024
Thu, 15th Feb 2024

It was not so long ago that the thought of employees using their personal mobile devices during work hours was frowned upon. Fast forward to the present, and businesses now embrace a mobile-first approach, arming their workforce with the tools necessary to enhance efficiency, precision, and customer engagement. A mobile-first strategy also means employees can work effectively from anywhere, particularly in regional locations and the field.

New applications enter the market almost daily, making innovative mobile technology a standard expectation for employees. Enterprise mobility management solutions have become critical for managing hardware, software, and network operations.

The effectiveness of these solutions is based on an organisation’s understanding of key enterprise mobility trends in 2024 and beyond. The top four trends are:

Trend 1: The Internet of Things (IoT) and operational integration

IoT is a network of interconnected devices that connect to the internet, which means they can transmit data without requiring human-to-human or human-to-computer interaction.

Today, IoT devices are prevalent across the workplace, from refrigerated cargo trailers and construction machinery to utility poles and smart hospital beds. Importantly, asset tracking with GPS tags helps organisations manage mobile assets in real time.

One of the significant shifts in 2024 will be the increase of 5G across both public and private sectors. This will elevate the incorporation of IoT across various industries, particularly in regional areas. The remarkable speed and minimal latency of 5G technology is particularly suited for industrial automation and control systems. Applications Through 5G, mobile devices become facilitators of collaborative work, leveraging sensor data and innovative technology to create a dynamic, intelligent overlay that transforms task execution. However, each endpoint’s presence introduces a potential vulnerability, with attack surfaces spreading far beyond the tractional network and security perimeters.

Trend 2: Hardening mobile device security measures

The second trend focuses on security for enterprise mobility devices. Mobile devices used within the confines of an office or in a remote setting require an enterprise mobility security strategy that adopts more rigorous safeguards. These safeguards ensure the confidentiality of data and protect corporate resources from unauthorised access or security breaches.  

The transition from conventional mobile device management (MDM) to mobile application management (MAM) is underway to address this need. This shift represents a more stringent yet adaptable approach to managing the use of smartphones and tablets in the workplace.  

Trend 3: Edge computing continues to rise

The growth of enterprise mobility programs is redefining the workspace concept, empowering employees to perform their duties from virtually any location and access corporate data on the move. For example, utility workers in the field use rugged tablets to access and record data, navigate to service locations, and communicate with central offices, even in remote areas with limited connectivity.

The advancement of mobile devices’ capacity for corporate data access and sedge computing support is driven by two significant trends. First, the evolution of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platforms empowers employees with the flexibility to use business tools and data from any internet-enabled device.  

Second, edge computing is set to play a critical role in facilitating the widespread adoption of sophisticated artificial intelligence (AI) services powered by large language models (LLMs). This involves distributing processing workloads in tandem with cloud services. To meet these demands, mobile device performance is advancing to accommodate the rigorous requirements of high-level computing.

Trend 4: Augmented reality (AR) in field operations

The advancement of AR is being fuelled by the deployment of 5G networks, which provide the necessary bandwidth and reduced latency that extended reality (XR) applications demand.

AR integrates digital information with the user’s real-time view of the physical world, superimposing virtual elements onto actual objects. Mobile devices designed for AR applications must be fortified with high-calibre processors capable of instantly executing complex calculations. They also require appropriate cameras, motion sensors, and other hardware to ensure seamless interaction with AR software.

In practical field applications, AR lets users augment the reality of their tasks with interactive data overlays. For example, repair teams can use AR applications to project step-by-step repair instructions onto the real-time video feed of the equipment being serviced. The potential of AR extends beyond a future concept; it is already being integrated into current practices.  

Enterprise mobility and the way forward

As we look towards 2024 and beyond, the enterprise mobility management sector will play an instrumental role in shaping business strategies. Mobile devices are critical in empowering organisations to refine their operational efficiency, provide superior customer service, and adopt innovations that generate tangible benefits for enterprise clients and stakeholders.