IBM launches Mobile Foundation enterprise application platform at Impact 2012

IBM unveiled its Mobile Foundation mobile enterprise application platform at its Impact 2012 conference in Las Vegas this week

IBM is attempting to make its mark in the mobile space with the unveiling of its Mobile Foundation at its Impact 2012 conference in Las Vegas this week.

The launch is based around a platform for building enterprise mobile applications – a technology IBM picked up in its acquisition of Worklight in February this year. 

The Mobile Foundation platform will enable businesses to develop and deploy mobile or web-based applications and automatically convert them to be compatible with iOS, Android or BlackBerry. 

The portfolio of products allows companies to connect mobile devices to both cloud and corporate environments, boosting their ability to take advantage of the growing trends of bring your own device (BYOD) and remote working.

Marie Wieck, general manager of the application and integration middleware division at IBM, said: “It's no secret that throughout the last decade, the most successful organisations have been quick to leverage new technology for business advantage.”

She claimed IBM had been playing in the mobile space for 10 years, so its Mobile Foundation would solidify its place in the market.

“It will provide customers with everything they need to support mobile devices in their business and use them to transform the way they interact with customers, partners and employees,” Wieck added.

Specific features of the launch include an update to IBM’s WebSphere Cast Iron – another acquired technology from May 2010 – to connect mobile devices to cloud environments or internal back-end systems.  

IBM’s Endpoint Manager will also be part of the package to manage and secure devices, providing application policy tools and the ability to wipe lost or stolen phones so data doesn’t fall into the wrong hands.

IBM will be offering 10-week pilots to test out the technology to encourage more users towards the new mobile way of working. IBM will also offer its services to help design the right implementation on a case-by-case basis.

IBM backed up the launch with research claiming 75% of the CIO respondents – numbering over 700 – were looking to introduce a mobile strategy into their businesses, due to the substantial improvement they saw in worker productivity using smartphones and tablets.

The CIOs also claimed to be able to significantly reduce their costs by using such technologies, cutting employee dependence on e-mail and ramping up the adoption of cloud services by remote workers.

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