BYOD is the New BYOB
Most adults will know what the original acronym “BYOB” stands for, but for the sake of our younger readers and keeping this post age-appropriate, let’s just start by saying for this discussion, BYOB stands for “Bring Your Own Beverage”. Kids: sometimes, adults will indicate to their friends that they will be happy to host the next party, but it’s gonna be a BYOB event.
Translation: “Bring Your Own Beverage - we don’t want to provide all the beverages at an added expense to us, so plan accordingly if you want to whet your whistle.”
If parents want to further that discussion with the younger readers, that’s fine but my goal at the end of the day is to help you understand why in our World, BYOD is such an important (and sometimes fierce) daily discussion with a large percentage of our customers, both internally and with us as their solutions provider.
In terms of bringing your own device (BYOD) to the office, where does your business begin the discussion? Many employers are changing or implementing BYOD policies for the first time to account for the growing number of smartphone owners. One recent survey showed 56% of Americans now own a smartphone device.
Keep in mind that’s just smartphones, some people are using the old school cell phone:
Anyone remember the pull-tab cans?
More and more people of “advanced ages” now have an iPad or a wireless laptop computer at their house. ComScore indicated in a 2012 study that tablet ownership exploded to over 40 million units in a 3-year period, while it took smartphones almost nine years to reach a similar level. I always encourage people to go take a look at an Apple store near them and note the average ages of the shoppers. The devices are being purchased but when and where they can be utilized is still evolving, without regard to age.
Were they to bring either of those devices into your building, they would need a secure place to access the features of the device, like the operation of a learning application with streaming video.
When considering BYOD implementation at your office, it’s almost like determining if you should make the next party you host a BYOB event. Gartner has complied results of a study estimating 70% of mobile professionals will conduct business on their personal smart devices by 2018. Uh, can you imagine waiting 4 years for your buddy to bring over beverages for the weekend football games? Totally insane. You’d go buy your own.
So a six pack of suds and a smart device don’t exactly fall into the same wheelhouse in terms of purchase price, but let’s look at it from the side of the business providing the device. The 16 GB iPad currently retails for $399. Quick math shows that purchasing 800 of those devices would set you back $319,200. That’s paying full retail price but there is an Apple Volume Purchase Program.
Here’s the key question though, do you have the infrastructure in place to allow those devices to function appropriately? Remember, it’s the 16 GB iPad that has only Wi-Fi access, so don’t plan on speeding across the internet once you power up the device. Making that type of investment would be like arriving at a party where all 800 frosty refreshments were on ice right in front of you but the tops of the bottles had been sealed shut with Super Glue. Senseless.
So, maybe you can cut down on some of the cost of purchasing devices when you buy in bulk, but how much of your budget is going to the “bottle openers”. In many ways, it may be more cost-effective to allow employees to bring their own devices and access your wireless networks in exactly the way you want them to.
Maybe, after doing the math, you decide that you will allow people to bring their devices and you will allow them to access your wireless network. Role-based access control may be the answer to keep people out of the places they aren’t supposed to be going with their personal devices on your corporate wireless network.
Think of it as “You can bring your own beverage, we’ll supply the refrigerator, but you can only store them in the bottom right hand drawer. Enjoy the party.”
-More interesting BYOD Stats.
BYOD is no longer just a trend…it’s also the future. It’s not going away so you might as well embrace it. Every successful BYOD solution starts with addressing your wireless network infrastrucutre, which just so happens to be what we specialize in. So, if you are considering BYOD you can contact us here with any questions or for a free consultation. Good luck!
Daryl is a Territory Manager at SecurEdge Networks. His love for wireless and security is only rivaled by his love for basketball, if only he was a foot taller…