I recently read a key and fascinating insight into procurement spending from an Accenture report; High Performance in Pharmaceuticals Procurement. In the report, a CPO of a European pharmaceutical company reveals: “We are unable to manage 25% of our indirect spend”. This inability to manage a substantial percentage of spend, which could amount to millions – even billions, emphasises the fact that procurement teams in the pharmaceutical industry must invest and thereby improve the existing solutions and tools they rely on.
You would be hard-pressed in today’s hyper-connected world to find an employee without a smartphone or tablet of some type, whether that be an Apple device, BlackBerry, Samsung, or another of the brands constantly fighting it out for top spot in the market.
New technologies releases can have a profound impact on enterprise, as businesses adopt novel systems in order to improve efficiency. In terms of enterprise mobility management (EMM), the recent release of the iPhone 6 and 6Plus (and associated software to launch them into the enterprise market) may herald the start of a new era for working on the move – especially with the introduction of Apple Pay, which is due to be released in the US later this month.
Apple Pay is a new payment method which can be utilised by customers of the new iPhones or the Apple Watch. Rumoured to be the final step in merging online and off-line shopping, the new facility allows people to pay for goods using their mobile device whether out on the high street, buying from a website or from the app store. When in a participating bricks-and-mortar store, users can carry out transactions using Apple Pay simply by holding their phone to the appropriate reader with their finger on Touch ID. There is no need to open an app or even to unlock the phone to enable this, and the user is ‘informed’ of payment completion by the phone beeping and/or vibrating.
Mobile World Congress 2014 Showcased What’s Next
In February this year, Mobile World Congress was once again hosted in the Mobile World Capital Barcelona. The industry-defining event was held at two world-class venues, Fira Gran Via and Fira Montjuïc, and welcomed more than 85,000 attendees from over 200 countries around the world over the four days.
There is no doubt that enterprise mobility is reshaping the way in which we work. The recent announcement of iOS 8 and its enterprise functionality is a clear sign that the market for business mobile devices and accompanying applications is set to increase. But as mobile devices are increasingly linked to corporate networks, many experts have raised concerns about the security of information shared.
This may be in part due to a reluctance to invest in security software or a lack of understanding about the risks involved. The lack of publicity concerning corporate security breaches could be attributed to attempts to hide any information which could prove damaging to reputation or may just be because many companies have been lucky – so far. One thing on which all analysts seem to agree is that security for Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) schemes is now absolutely essential, making expert advice vital to those embarking on an enterprise mobility scheme – and for those who already have one. Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) can help to provide peace of mind to organisations of all sizes, especially those which have numerous employees who are mobility enabled using their own devices.
As Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) strategies are increasingly used by business, it is not surprising that there has been an increase in the use of Apple products for work purposes. Traditionally seen as personal devices, most would not necessarily think of iPads and iPhones as business machines, but this is changing.
Previously, we explored Apple’s collaboration with enterprise giant IBM and how it seems set to transform enterprise mobility. It appears as though the latest Apple products and operating system are geared towards helping the company move into the business market, but how realistic are their goals? Can they really surpass the hardware and software already established within the Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) market?
BYOD schemes are now widely used by businesses of all sizes but the increase in the use of mobile devices for enterprise is now the subject of scrutiny, for a variety of reasons. The fact that our technological capability is increasing rapidly is positive, but it also means that legislation concerning its use is rapidly rendered obsolete.
Since smartphones and other mobile devices have become almost ubiquitous, finding ways to gain screen time and space from those connected on the move has become essential.
In the early days of app creation, creative, useful or fun ideas that caught on could be produced by just about anyone with technical knowledge. Although this is still true in some cases (think Nguyễn Hà Đông and his game ‘Flappy Bird’) it is increasingly the case that large companies with higher budgets are behind the apps which become the most popular on app stores, often due to their large investment in advertising. Of the approximately three million developers worldwide, more than half earn less than $500 (US) per month for each app. The fact that copycat apps are so readily made and placed on stores also does nothing to help download numbers, meaning that the good times are receding for small developers. In fact, increased competition means that all app developers are finding themselves in a less than ideal marketplace.
With malware attacks on the rise in all parts of the industry, and the growth of enterprise mobility practices such as BYOD on the increase, it seems a good time to publish a primer on the subject, covering what threats to expect and how to guard against them.
Malware: The Basics
Earlier this month, Deutsche Telekom rejected a $15 billion offer for a controlling 56.6% stake in T-Mobile US. The offer – which has been described as ‘inadequate’ and even ‘preposterous’ – was made by French telecom provider Iliad and was always unlikely to be accepted. T-Mobile is only too aware of its own value as the fourth largest mobile provider in the USA, especially after they revealed that profits had increased by more than a third in the quarter leading up to the bid in response to effective campaign strategy and marketing.
Deutsche Telekom has been trying to exit the US market for some time but is hoping for an offer that adds further value when compared to retaining their stake in T-Mobile US. Talks with Sprint, another highly successful US mobile provider (the third largest in the country) have also been called off after months of negotiation proved fruitless in the face of regulatory opposition. There was great enthusiasm for the deal from Softbank Corp (Sprint’s parent), who felt that acquisition of T-Mobile would enable them to take on the leading US wireless providers Verizon and AT&T.
On 15 July, Apple and IBM announced they had formed an exclusive partnership to transform enterprise mobility. The two giants (who have worked together before on a number of projects) feel their joint expertise will benefit both parties and help them gain a solid footing in the enterprise mobility market.
The cost of international calls has long been the bane of traveller’s lives, particularly from a mobile, whether they are holidaying abroad or away on business. For large organisations with operations in several countries, such charges can make a significant contribution to telecom expenses as employees travel for training or meetings with colleagues overseas. It isn’t surprising that many find the cost of international calls unjustifiable, especially in the days of services such as Skype.
Although many would use Skype, FaceTime (or similar online services) for communication in preference to telephones when abroad, patchy Wi-Fi and expensive roaming connections make this impractical in some cases. For this reason, the arrival of the new free Roamer app for iOS and Android has been met with delight by holiday makers and companies alike.
In October 2013, the UK telecommunications regulator Ofcom published a consultation concerning the proposed increase in 900 and 1800MHz spectrum airwave band license fees for mobile providers.
The changes would have seen Treasury income from users of these bands increase by a very useful factor of almost five, from approximately £65million to an estimated £309million per year. Under the proposal, Telefónica and Vodafone’s annual fee would have increased from £15.6million to £83.1million each. EE and Hutchinson 3G’s fees were predicted to soar from £24.9million to £107.1million and from £8.3million to £35.7million, respectively.
Google Glass is an Android device resembling a pair of glasses, which can be controlled by your voice or via a capacitive touch pad. The optical head mounted display shows information directly into the wearer’s field of vision such as photos, web searches, messages, apps, texts and more.
Based on a version of Android, the operating system can run apps that are optimised specifically for the device, called Glassware. The wearable technology can be connected to a smart device by Bluetooth or through Wi-Fi when at home or in a hotspot.
Yell hit the headlines on 30 July 2012 when the online marketing services and directories provider announced it’s rebranding to hibu. With operations throughout the UK and USA in addition to Spain and Latin America, the organisation had come a long way since its establishment as a telecommunications division of the General Post Office (GPO). Here, we take a look at the history of hibu and explore how businesses can best manage online directory access for employees who travel.
Yellow Pages made its first appearance back in 1966 with Brighton the chosen location for the initial edition of the publication. Over the coming years coverage of the business directory was expanded to serve across the UK, with the big yellow book quickly becoming a key information resource for households and businesses alike.
Samsung is currently one of the world’s leading companies specialising in electronics. They are known by consumers and competitors for their product innovation and quality, especially within the fields of digital appliances, components and system integration.
In 2013, Samsung began to construct the largest mobile phone factory in the world set in Vietnam’s Thai Nguyen province. The construction reflects Samsung’s enviable position in the mobile market. In Samsung’s native South Korean tongue, the name means ‘Tri Star’ and conveys things great in size, power and number; so far, Samsung is definitely living up to its name, though the name’s other meaning – eternity – has yet to be demonstrated.
20 July marks the anniversary of the formation of a pioneering business and something of a legend in telecommunications.
The Marconi Wireless Telegraph and Signal Company started out in 1897 after founder Guglielmo Marconi was granted a British patent for his wireless technology. The fledgling business opened a radio factory in Chelmsford the year after, followed by a specialist training college for recruits. Over the next few years, Marconi was responsible for numerous vital innovations in radio technology, paving the way for the modern communications and broadcasting systems upon which we now rely. To commemorate the founding of the Marconi business, it is interesting to explore the history leading to its creation.