Ready, Set, Go Mobile!

Posted on September 4, 2012 · Posted in Software

Ready, Set, Go Mobile!

I hear it all the time, “I want to work from anywhere”. This has been possible for some time when using laptops, but there is an increasing desire to do this with smaller devices, iPads, tablets and phones. Who wants to lug around a laptop anyway?

There are a couple of technologies that will be required to make this a reality. First is connectivity. Our mobile devices need a reliable connection to a network. This could be from a mobile provider such as AT&T, Verizon or Sprint, using 3G or 4G LTE. It can also be an 802.11 wireless connection from your home or office network.

Second, you need to have something to connect to. For years now we have been connecting to our office email systems through web browsers , mobile phones and tablets. The next be step will be connections to our office document management systems, accounting, and other line of business applications, right here on our mobile devices. There are a simple ways to do this now, but few that scale well beyond a few connections and have the options and features we desire. For that we need a better solution. Enter VDI – Virtual Desktop Infrastructure. This technology, VDI, has been around a while, and I believe it will be the most reasonable way for us to work from our mobile devices. It provides our familiar virtual desktop computer, with all of our applications and data.

A lot of development has been done to make a desktop PC useful on a tablet form factor. I think we are almost there. I personally have chosen a Kindle Fire platform as my device of choice. My iPad is a bit too large to carry around, a mobile phone too small, a 7” color display is just about right. I am not convinced that this is the device size I will stay with, but it works for me now.

On another note – There is a chain of thought that begs the question, why are we so willing to work almost 24/7? When do we actually detach from work and allow our mind and spirit a time to gain perspective and actually rest? Admittedly, I have found that being connected real-time has allowed me flexibility in travel and better communication with staff and customers.  Still I wonder, where should we draw the line…

Mobile solutions do exist today, and are getting better. What have been your experiences with mobile platforms? Let us know what you think!