As current cloud, mobile and social trends show, users are facing significant changes in information technology. The classic desktop era, which began its success story in 1995, has for some time now been stagnating. For several years sales figures have been recording a significant trend towards notebooks. Sales of tablet-PCs are currently skyrocketing (Gartner forecasts the sale of 119 mio mobile devices in 2012: http://www.gartner.com/it/page.jsp?id=1980115)
However, the sale of appliances alone is no solution. It is essential, in paving the way to progress, that certain obstacles be removed.
Security is considered the greatest risk, especially with cloud and mobile technology, which are the essence of this new market. This is naturally a genuine concern when considering the large number of security problems. This should not, however, serve as an excuse. A survey by the renowned OVUM-Group, for instance, shows that organizations with no practical experience of cloud services frequently regard them as insecure, whereas organizations having hands-on experience in using cloud technology have fewer problems with security issues.
Increasing globalization and cross-organizational collaboration also call for ways of enabling secure business transactions in a global environment. This requires either opening up existing systems to additional users and/or the utilization of cloud services that target these collaboration needs. The combination of cloud and mobile technologies in particular clearly indicates that the time for a new era has come, which allows for the seamless integration of mobile devices into a globally accessible system. This means the classic in-house corporate IT department is facing major challenges. For users, it no longer matters whether these systems are used from a desktop or notebook, or on mobile devices via web browsers and apps. The content is what matters; the systems are merely tools – or they will become parts of who you are, as Forrester analyst Brian Hopkins puts it in his blog.
So what happens if one chooses to simply ignore these trends? In such a case – and many organizations have already witnessed this phenomenon – the data are simply saved in other systems; as e-mail copies, for instance, or on insecure file hosts. It will be obvious to everyone that this is a significant risk, and a step in the wrong direction.
Hence the motto: Let us face the new era, regardless of what we decide to call it.