PLM Developers – what is the right mobile platform?

Mobile is coming to enterprise. Blackberry was a first device who cracked mobile enterprise. Enterprise mobile email delivered by Blackberry was king of the road many years. Then came iPhone, iPad and many other devices. The development for different mobile platforms is skyrocketing. There are many questions here. Every PLM vendors did a first step and developed "something mobile" for the last 2-3 years. After the first mobile strike, more serious questions are coming – what is the PLM mobile application strategy? How to support a diversity of platforms and devices?

Last year, I posted few blog articles with my thoughts about PLM and mobile. You can start by navigating to the following link – Mobile PLM gold rush: Did vendor missed the point? One of the big topics in mobile development is to choose between native mobile apps and mobile browsers – Mobile PLM: Apps vs. Mobile Browsers.

Nevertheless, the choice of mobile platform for enterprise and PLM remains open. Enterprise PLM vendors have hard time to make a choice and assign their development priorities. Few days ago, I was reading CIO article – Microsoft to make leaps in mobile enterprise. The article refers to the research made by Aberdeen Group. Here is an interesting quote and picture with numbers. Aberdeen plans to release its official findings next week

The survey looked at mobile app deployment plans by platform—Apple iOS, Android, Windows 8/Windows Phone and BlackBerry—covering both tablets and phones. "The plans for mobile app deployment in 2013 were a big surprise," says Aberdeen research director Andrew Borg. The data shows Microsoft Windows Phone 8 and Surface tablets poised to make a profound leap, as CIOs hope to retake control of the mobile enterprise. Apple iPhones and iPads may be reaching a point of saturation.

What is my conclusion? I think, PLM developers have a hard time to choice the right platform. I don’t see a single platform domination for the next few years. To me, the development on iOS platform is an obvious choice. The decision about other platforms is not clear. Microsoft clearly keep their presence on the agendas of enterprise CIOs and it makes chances of enterprise PLM to develop support for Windows mobile potentially high. Android platform most probably will become a major by population. Will it be the same for enterprise customers? This is a good question to ask. With the high diversity of devices, PLM vendors need to focus on platforms and backend technologies that can make their choice flexible and decrease a cost to support additional mobile platforms. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg

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