Best of TechBeacon 2016: Mobile shifts gears to apps-first
With enterprise mobility management practices maturing, discussions around mobile adoption have finally evolved beyond BYOD and the different implementation options available to organizations. Instead, the focus is on strategies for building, managing, improving and evolving mobile applications and services.
TechBeacon's top 10 mobile stories of 2016 capture the biggest trends in this space.
Apple introduced several significant changes and feature updates in iOS 10, the latest version of its mobile operating system. If the organization you work for is like most others, there’s a good chance that many of your users have iOS 10 running on their iPhones and iPads. But are you ready for it? Have your apps been upgraded to support the new iOS? Do you understand how to accommodate all of the privacy and security improvements that Apple has built into the operating system without losing your ability to manage the devices? Matthew David, Senior Manager of Mobility Center of Excellence at Kimberly-Clarke, has some pointers.
All it takes is a few crashes, freezes or delays in load times for users to uninstall your mobile apps from their devices. Studies show that users have little tolerance for mobile software that doesn’t perform to their expectations. Some of the biggest pitfalls include bad memory management, poor exception handling, and inadequate testing, reports Erik Sherman.
One of the keys to keeping on top of the skills and tools you need to do your job well as an Android app developer is to listen to the experts. Fortunately, social media tools offer a great way to do that. Many of the leading Android developers use Twitter to share news, ideas and tutorials. Following them is a good way to stay abreast with the latest and the greatest, says TechBeacon's Mitch Pronschinske, who lists 40 Android developers you absolutely need to follow on Twitter.
Users have a tendency to download mobile apps while giving little consideration as to how secure, or not, they are. Studies show that the vast majority of mobile users blithely assume that their apps are adequately secure, and don't hesitate to use them in an enterprise setting. If you want to mitigate the risk of attackers exploiting weaknesses in mobile apps on users' phones to get at your enterprise data, perform penetration testing on them. Johanna Curiel, co-founder of Ossecsoft, gives the how and the why.
An integrated development environment can make it much easier for app developers to build applications for any of the major mobile platforms—Android, iOS and HTML. Early cross-platform tools, such as Titanium and PhoneGap, have failed to live up to their early promise. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t others. Matthew David has the lowdown on three of the most promising cross-platform tools for mobile app development.
Web native mobile application frameworks reduce the need for developers to learn Java, Objective-C or Swift in order to write a native application for iOS or Android. Frameworks allow developers to build mobile applications using the web applications with with they're most familiar, so long as they know the right ones to choose. Maximiliano Firtman, author of High Performance Mobile Web, describes how to sort through the choices.
Implementing a single sign-on to mobile apps can ease identity management headaches for enterprises that have to deal with a growing mobile workforce—which is pretty much everyone these days. But mobile technologies add a layer of complexity that traditional desktop SSO technologies can’t handle. Matthew David describes the best options for mobile SSO.
If you don’t know what edge analytics is, it might be a good idea to get familiar with the technology. The emerging Internet of Things (IoT) is once again redefining traditional notions of the network edge, and is driving a need for skills that can understand and interpret all the data being generated by the devices that operate there. Whether you are still early in your career, or just looking to broaden your market appeal, consider developing new skills in this hot area, says contributor Christopher Null.
Beta testing is one of the best ways to get critical feedback from users on a soon-to-launch mobile app, but beta testing programs can be a big problem if you have thousands of testers to shepherd through the process. Contributor Will Kelly reports on the strategies you can adopt to run a successful mobile app beta.
One way to offload some of the headaches associated with managing modern mobile services is to use a mobile backend-as-a-service. MBasS vendors provide a slew of handy mobile services, including authentication, storage, push notification, analytics, and ad management. Do you know who the top players are, how much their services cost, or how they can improve mobile service delivery? Matthew David has the answers.