ICYMI: Aruba study highlights #GenMobile takeover

ICYMI: Aruba reveals a study that says #GenMobile employees will transform the workplace of the future, Masa Son criticizes the United States' Internet system, the PRISM effect continues.

Aruba study shows IT pros are pressured by #GenMobile employees

Aruba Networks shared the findings of a recent study that indicates 70% of IT professionals are feeling pressured to accommodate so-called #GenMobile employees. According to the survey, about 50% of global organizations saw an increase in mobile or remote working in the last year, while 77% saw an increase in the use of mobile devices in the workplace.

"The workplace of the future will not only need to be right-sized to align with IT budgets but it will also require a mobility-centric and secure wireless infrastructure, a move toward employee self-service and a willingness to embrace consumer IT technologies to enhance #GenMobile productivity," said Ben Gibson, chief marketing officer for Aruba Networks.

Something to note about #GenMobile employees is that almost 50% of them prefer working outside the traditional 9-5 schedule. More than 60% believe their mobile devices help them stay productive at work. The study says it is important to keep #GenMobile needs in mind if employers want to stay competitive and hire the best-connected talent. 

The "workplace" might not even be a specific location, but rather any place where an employee can get work done. Chris Sanderson, co-founder of The Future Laboratory, which conducted the survey, said,  "Cloud-based technologies and the increased use of mobile devices as our work tools of choice are ushering in a new social, cultural and corporate paradigm where workplaces are more federated and collaborative, less hierarchical and increasingly less location-specific, as more of #GenMobile employees clock in by logging on." Indeed, according to the study, 37% said they expect to increase the hours they work remotely in 2014. For the younger #GenMobile generation, 49% are expecting to increase the amount of time working away from the office.

Masa Son and the digital home

Revere Digital co-CEO and Re/Code Co-Executive Editor Walt Mossberg recently wrapped up the inaugural Code Conference, citing six major themes. Music, Wintel and artificial intelligence stood out, but so did debate about broadband speed and accessibility, particularly in the United States. Masayoshi Son, Sprint's new owner and head of Japan's SoftBank, criticized the United States' Internet system for low speeds and high costs, pointing out that although America invented the Internet, the nation's broadband speeds rank 15th out of 16th major countries. The culprit, Cnet reported Son as saying, is too much control in too few hands. Son said if he can merge Sprint with T-Mobile, he hopes he can gain a competitive edge.

 Meantime, the topic of a "smart home," previously discussed at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference, gained additional traction at the Code Conference. Tony Fadell, CEO of Nest, said that he is working on developing digital systems to bring the Internet of Things to the home. “There’s security, there’s health … we're looking at all the various things that are associated with the home," said Fadell.

The PRISM effect: China media call for severe punishment of U.S. tech companies

Following up on their previous announcements to cut ties with Cisco, Chinese state media have gone a step further in their attack on U.S. tech companies, calling for the Chinese government to "'punish severely the pawns' of the U.S. government for monitoring China and stealing secrets," according to Reuters.

The issue bubbled up about a year ago after former U.S. National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden revealed PRISM, an extensive spying program. As part of PRISM, Snowden said the NSA took data it compiled from Google and Apple, among other companies. In response, China has begun to freeze out some U.S. tech firms including IBM, Cisco and Oracle, instead choosing to work with domestic technology companies. This boycott could end up costing U.S. companies billions of dollars.

The PRISM effect goes beyond the bad blood with China, as more companies and users become concerned about U.S. snooping. Cloud providers, for example, are at risk of losing $35 billion  over the next three years because foreign customers are afraid of U.S. surveillance. Providers have stepped up their data protection strategies, employing such protocols as transport layer security as an encryption measure to guard data and information.

Gartner names Citrix a leader in enterprise mobility management

Gartner has given Citrix a lead spot in its 2014 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Mobility Management. Citrix XenMobile is an application that provides mobile device management, mobile application management, mobile content management and enterprise-grade productivity applications either on premise or via the cloud.

While a lead position in the Gartner Magic Quadrant can be a sign of a company's anticipated success, some say that the quadrant is not the ultimate source of vendor information that it once was. With the advent of social media and the increase in platforms for communication, there are now multiple ways to research vendors to get product information.

SearchNetworking expert Carrie Higbie explains, "We all know technology changes rapidly. Companies are bought and sold regularly. Is there really anything new that happens in the leaders quadrant? Not that often. The information to gain is what happens in the other quadrants, but Gartner certainly isn't the only definitive source. There are many think tanks. There are also peer-based sites and conferences. Ombud.com, LinkedIn and other sites provide forums for common discussion (good and bad)."

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Do you see #GenMobile having an impact on your workplace? Do you think the "remote working" trend is only occurring in specific industries?
Well, as an employee at a company where remote working has long been accepted, I think the benefits are obvious enough that the trend will only continue to grow. It doesn't work in every industry, of course - it makes the most sense in jobs where we people regularly "commute to computers" - ruling out service industries, many education roles, etc. Having worked remotely full time in the past, I continue to think that a hybrid model that includes some face-to-face time is the best solution for building collaboration and investment in one's organization. 
Thank you for your comment Ben! I agree, some face-to-face time is good for morale.