MobileIron has announced the launch of the new version of its virtual smartphone platform to include its application management and security service.
It said that MobileIron 4.0 provides new functionality across three key areas: Storefront for businesses to deliver in-house iOS apps to its employees without posting them publicly; the MobileIron Mobility API to enable the delivery of cross-platform application information, so IT can know what apps are on what devices; and security and rogue application protection for full visibility of application inventory to be combined with application control rules to let IT decide which apps to allow in and which to keep out.
According to the company, from its early days it was aware of where there were enterprise smartphones, there would eventually be enterprise apps and they would need to be managed and secured.
Talking to SC Magazine, Jesse Lindeman, director of product management for MobileIron, said that it is about helping the organisation with the next-generation need for controlling applications within the enterprise.
He said: “The application function sits in two categories: getting the right applications out there; and when they are based internally the company has got to get to the devices with ease. It is about getting them out there and keeping the bad applications out.
“You can manage this with a policy, though there is a level of concern for Android users as we have seen scary reports of actions with Android applications and the transmission of data. You can do this in different ways by specifying keywords or a certain application, we are seeing this more with the enterprises who want more control and will produce a clear framework.
“The challenge of the problem is that this is not easy to manage, there are different ways to control it, such as creating a framework barrier to isolate a violation or to send messages to a user, helpdesk or to the security team or at worst you can block users.”
Asked if writing applications is a general problem for companies in his experience, Lindeman said that it was not but he was seeing more enterprises be more precocious around classifying what is and is not okay. “We find that companies want to do the right thing but the problem is not knowing what the right thing is,” he said.
Bob Tinker, CEO of MobileIron, said: “2011 is going to be the year of the mobile enterprise app. Departments, business groups and even individual employees are taking it upon themselves to create innovative apps that solve specific business problems, improve how work is done, or just make their lives easier.
“Development is decentralised and many times IT isn't even aware of what is being built. In order to navigate this enterprise app storm, our customers need structure, guidance and technology to harness mobile innovation while protecting against rogue apps and, with this release, we're giving them the most complete platform to do so.”