The empire strikes back: Microsoft’s mobile strategy - will Cortana usurp Google Now?

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I was interested recently to see that Microsoft’s Cortana personal assistant can replace Google Now in Android beta test versions. Google originally created Android as a defensive move so that it couldn’t be frozen out of mobile by Apple or Microsoft, so while today this sounds like a hobbyist project, the possibility of Microsoft replacing Google services in Android shouldn’t be dismissed lightly.

The world has moved on from the days when Google was afraid of Windows...

By David Akka, 25 August 2015, 0 comments. Categories: Android, Enterprise Mobility, Microsoft.

How to stop avoiding agile in your business

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I have used agile methodology to manage many software and transformation projects to deliver on time, on budget with great results, and while I firmly believe that any team can become agile, I understand why agile can be difficult to adopt. Many of the challenges are caused by a mix of habit and psychology, and here’s how you can overcome them with minimum difficulty.

1)  What...

By David Akka, 15 June 2015, 0 comments. Categories: Collaboration, Development, Productivity.

Is an agile culture just for the tech elite?

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Agile projects are highly collaborative and involve constant feedback in tight cycles. This allows user expectations to be met while not wasting time on mere nice-to-have features or extra effort that doesn’t impact the business, but unfortunately we’re constantly hearing that it only works if your team is packed with top performers.

Is it true? Are the benefits of Agile reserved only for a tech elite, with the rest of us doomed to non-

By David Akka, 18 May 2015, 0 comments. Categories: Development, Employee Education, Employees, Enterprise Mobility.

The rise of the data scientist: How it makes analytics a business driver

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I love technology because of the ways in which it changes society, and one of the first manifestations of that is new jobs: today, I’d like to look at the rise of the data scientist. I’ve previously discussed the ways in which traditional Business Intelligence tools that rely on reactive data warehouses and analysis cubes are being supplanted by nimble, real-time analytics tools...

By David Akka, 01 April 2015, 0 comments. Categories: Data & Analytics, Employees, Enterprise Mobility.

Cutting through the hype of big data in small (and large) businesses

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Big Data is one of the most widely-hyped buzzwords of the tech industry, and that means there is a lot of hype and misunderstanding. Worse, concepts like “data science” are constantly thrown around, making this emergent technology appear like black magic to the business leaders who could benefit from it. This blog aims to cut through the hype to help you understand what Big Data is and its relevance to your...

By David Akka, 10 November 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Big Data, Cloud , Enterprise Mobility.

How to get mobile UX right in a notification-driven world

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Analysis Recently I’ve been thinking about a trend in mobile apps, which seem to be moving away from the “user interface (UI) first” approach that has dominated websites and mobile apps to date. Rather, it seems that advancing technologies are making the UI subordinate to an overall user experience (UX) which includes not only the graphical interface but also the back end connectivity, performance and reliability. Further, between improving voice input,...

By David Akka, 06 November 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Development, Enterprise Mobility, UX.

Why a successful CRM needs strategy

I have previously explained my view that the true value of any CRM implementation lies in its ability to provide data to processes across other systems, both internal and external, making it a solution rather than a tool.  As suppliers and customers communicate with your company across more services, it’s vital to be able to access this information, but integrating so many diverse touchpoints can be time-consuming and complex.

As a result, rather than the traditional feature-based approach to choosing a CRM vendor, you might have better...

By David Akka, 11 September 2014, 2 comments. Categories: Big Data, Enterprise Mobility.

Why Chatter has changed the world

When Salesforce first announced their Chatter enterprise social media tool, I was sceptical that it would really bring any real benefit to the enterprise.  In my experience, and that of many of my clients, enterprise social tools tend to be Facebook clones that don’t get a lot of use.  In fact, last year I wrote that we just don’t understand enterprise social media for the following reasons:

  • It causes information overload
  • We need to actively filter our feeds, which becomes laborious
  • Disconnection from workflows...

By David Akka, 21 August 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Employees, Enterprise Mobility, Social.

How data quality is key in any integration and mobile project

I just returned from a meeting with one of my clients, a major player in the automotive industry, who have an integration between SAP R/3 and Salesforce.  Every day they send flat file extracts from both systems to an external agency to perform data matching.  This got me thinking, why not add a small data quality, or customer data management, component into your integration workflow, to do this automatically rather than going to an external agency?

I’ve previously stressed the business value...

By David Akka, 07 August 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Big Data, Enterprise Mobility.

The enterprise mobility ecosystem battle

I’ve often written about how to get the most from enterprise mobility, with smart mobile platforms, process-based integration, and the game-changing underlying technologies like Cloud and In Memory Data Grids or grid computing. Following the recent Apple WWDC and Google I/O developer conferences, it’s worth looking at a very different battle: what are the mobile ecosystems doing...

By David Akka, 07 July 2014, 2 comments. Categories: Android, BYOD, Enterprise Mobility, iOS, Microsoft.

The solution to “shadow IT”

In users’ minds, IT no longer needs to look complicated and if it does than you’re doing it wrong.  But users have no real understanding of network security, data protection laws or the current threat environment.  It’s better to guide and support your users while giving them the tools they want.

“Shadow IT” is the trend for enterprise users making use of IT services that have not been approved by corporate IT.  It covers a broad range of use cases, from employees...

By David Akka, 25 June 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Employees, Enterprise Mobility, Mobile.

How a smart mobile platform gets smarter with in-memory data

I wrote recently about the reasons In-Memory Data Grids (IMDGs) could be a game-changer for enterprise mobility. In that blog I argued that faster processing would allow more users to access business processes on mobile, with instant data retrieval and smart searches; but that this increased connectivity would place greater strain on networks.

Today I want to talk about how smart mobile platforms, underpinned with In-Memory Data Grids, can be used to optimise your enterprise applications’ data needs, and provide some pointers for what to look...

By David Akka, 20 June 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Big Data, Cloud , Enterprise Mobility.

SugarCRM integration and the enterprise portal

Following the recent SugarCon event where the company I work for exhibited and showed its integration and enterprise mobile application tools for SugarCRM and many other systems, I wanted to address one of the key questions we were frequently asked at the event, “how can I make my SugarCRM more than a customer database?”

This is becoming a key question because the open-source CRM software, SugarCRM, is currently reorganising here in Europe in order to deliver a more...

By David Akka, 30 May 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Cloud , Enterprise Mobility.

'Lego' Ara phone: The future for enterprise mobility?

Google’s modular smartphone, Project Ara, looks to be a reality and may be on sale early next year.  This opens up the possibility of phone hardware becoming like Lego, where you can simply switch phone configurations quickly and easily to suit your current requirements.  While this clearly offers the customisation and personalisation craved by many consumer users, I believe that this flexibility could make the Ara very popular with business users too.

What is Ara?

By David Akka, 08 May 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Enterprise Mobility.

Why are platforms the future for mobile app development?

Over the last six months I met with a wide range of customers and prospects in order to understand how they understand enterprise mobility, and especially to see whether they see it as a business opportunity or just another piece of technology. It’s no secret that the past few years have seen a debate between two paradigms: whether to write specific code for different devices, or to take a wider approach.

The rapid advances in mobile technology have led to a world where there is no single accepted approach, but...

By David Akka, 09 April 2014, 1 comment. Categories: Development, Enterprise Mobility.

Could Salesforce1 become your enterprise portal?

Salesforce1 is the new platform with a big ambition: to connect business applications and users, creating an integrated mobile Salesforce experience with APIs and mobile support. It represents a more API-focused view of Salesforce and, being built on the Chatter social platform, takes the view that our work lives are increasingly defined by connections.

This ties in very nicely with a concept I’ve been using for a while, the “enterprise portal” where systems integration is used to automate...

By David Akka, 07 March 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Cloud , Enterprise Mobility.

Is in-memory data the end of business intelligence?

Since business intelligence (BI) systems evolved as data warehouses, businesses have been able to analyse and act upon increasing amounts of information that they hold in their databases. However today’s trends towards Big Data and real-time analytics are making BI systems look like dinosaurs: yesterday’s data is too old to be relevant, causing businesses to miss out on opportunities when faced with increasingly agile competitors.

In-memory data is the technology that is making this world a reality, able...

By David Akka, 20 February 2014, 0 comments. Categories: Big Data, Enterprise Mobility.