My personal long standing belief is that, at best, mobile tech can be an enabler or a support function to the "conventional" desktops and laptops and will never be able to replace them, as ease of use can never be an substitute for a more encompassing system. Moreover there were always questions on the infra side as well. But all these questions are getting more than satisfactorily answered, with smart phones out beating processing speed of some laptop models and with increasing battery backup facility. Such is their impact that, even the latest version of ERP systems have incorporated social networking and mobile friendly processes in their recent releases, is my long shot of a guess. With increasing man hours being spent on phones, it makes not just business sense to incorporate business processes into smaller screens, but a near essential one as well.
Mobility opens up lot of avenues from a traditional software life cycle set up perspective.
- Probably a separate set of requirements for shorter workflow that are mobile friendly, catering to majority of the approval cycle related processes and more importantly a much larger populace as compared to wired systems
- HTML's would get a major boost and much needed upgrade
- Security could be an all critical area to watch out for, as, more the number of hands on the system, critical the security needs become
- Performance testing could be opened up at an all new level, catering specifically to mobile devices
- Data storage mechanisms would require a reboot
- Mobile data interfacing might undergo a sea of change and the concept of storage and data retrieval would be totally revamped
- Would need a separate study dedicated to collate and confirm the cost savings associated with mobile solutions, further giving a leg up for mobility
Now that the mobile device industry has thrown the gauntlet, its time for the business to accept the challenge. In near future, we can surely expect the business processes to be dual faced, one set specifically tailored for mobile devices, with shorter workflow and one for conventional systems.
End of the day, be it mobile or a desktop or a laptop, the core function of any automated system is to cater to the needs of the end user and business, for they are the winners who takes them all.