You thought BYOD was a thorny problem? BYO-PC will be even harder
The BYOD trend began with mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, and in most organizations these are the only types of devices included in a BYOD program. A range of recent announcement and trends, however, have begun to shine a spotlight on the on the idea of extending BYOD to include BYO-PC and BYO-Mac options.
- Elements of VMWare's strategy like its Horizon program highlighted last week at VMWorld
- MokaFive's Enterprise Anyware, which the company pitched as a replacement for VMWare ACE, which will reach end of life status at the end of this year (not to be confused with MobileIron's newly announced Anyware mobile management suite)
- Microsoft's Windows To Go feature in the enterprise edition of Windows 8
- Centrify's new cloud-based Mac and mobile management solution that the company describes as "ideal" for BYO-Mac initiatives
- Apple's move to lightweight iOS-style configuration profiles for enterprise Mac management
All of these technologies point to solutions for expanding the concept of BYOD to apply to notebook PCs, Macbooks, or even less traditional options like Chromebooks. The big question, however, is whether it's really feasible or desirable for an organization to extend its BYOD program to include employee-selected and owned computers.
Why mobile was an easy fit for BYOD in many organizations
There are several key factors that have made mobile platforms an ideal fit with the BYOD model.
- Minimal cost to purchase a smartphone or tablet compared to a mid-range or high-end notebook.
- Mobile devices are add-ons to existing enterprise staples rather than a wholesale replacement of a existing technology like a PC or Mac.
- Mobile devices aren't used for as many tasks as PCs and Macs.
Google made a big splash almost a year ago with its Google Glass Internet-connected eyewear. Now the search giant is ready to broaden its assault on the wearable computing market by releasing a software development kit for developers to create Android-based software for wearables.