By Brian Albright, Field Technologies magazine
Advice for making sense of the consumer versus rugged device debate.
Enterprise IT departments used to support a finite universe of hardware that was typically more expensive and more powerful than what was available on the consumer market. But the explosion in mobile device platforms, combined with falling costs and more computing power, have flipped that equation. Now, company-issued devices often trail the leading edge consumer devices. The advent of hosted software solutions and the trend toward “bring your own device” (BYOD) mobile policies have led to consumer technology entering the enterprise. Rugged computers have been increasingly influenced by their consumer counterparts in both their design and functionality, consumer devices are becoming more enterprise-friendly, and IT departments have scrambled to keep up. “IT departments must be able to take advantage of these technologies while ensuring enterprise security isn’t compromised,” says Bradley Wall, director of mobility sales at Datalogic ADC. “Smartphones available today offer some built-in security features that include data encryption and virtual private network configuration, plus device and application management capabilities to a certain extent.”