Mobile collaboration in 2014: 4 big predictions

A recent report by the Centre for Economic and Business Research showed that worker productivity is nearly five times higher than it was in the 1970s, and could increase by another 22% by 2020. But, with mobile collaboration on the rise, what does the year ahead hold? Paul Steiner, EMEA MD of mobile file-sharing firm Accellion, gives his predictions.

1. Improved user experience

Enterprise applications must standardise in 2014 to put the user experience first. User expectations today are that all apps will provide the kind of sleek and sophisticated experience that a consumer app does, no matter what kind of security functions or business processes are built into the functionality. As vendors create apps in 2014, they will need to standardise this requirement or lose market credibility.

2. Next-generation collaboration

Collaboration will continue to evolve, next with an emphasis on flexible workflows. Currently different types of content creation and editing are not tied into each other, but soon they will have to be. The workflows we have now will be more flexible so that people can do multiple things at the same time, between various devices, so you can transfer a Webex presentation from a laptop to your phone, and be truly connected while on the go. People are looking for flexible workflows, which is really driving BYOD to the next evolution.

3. Security

Solutions today have more hardware-defined security, rather than software, for mobile devices. There will be a good mix of encryption for both in the future to make the user experience seamless in a secure way. Security will take precedence, but user experience will continue to be sleek and seamless. One example is single sign-on capabilities. More solutions are integrating this feature as people carry mobile devices in more and more places, and need heightened level of encryption and security.

Given the recent leaps and bounds of hardware development, such as the fingerprint scanner on the iPhone 5s, there will be hardware security features like sensors that will enable new software development to further strengthen security. With fast-paced development of hardware, software features will accelerate as well to make use of these new solutions, such as hardware-assisted encryption. The fingerprint scanner is one example, where the data is stored in the device, not the cloud.

4. Big data’s mobile growth

Despite the exponential growth in big data and analytics, how companies access and collaborate information is still a challenge. As mobile form-factors continue to be pivotal, there will be growth in solutions that process this data to put it in a user-friendly mobile format. Administrators need to be able to analyse data sets from their preferred device, and with this evolution, big data will begin feeding into the mobile ecosystem.

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Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...

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