PDAs and cell phones are often technology tools that the end user figures out on their own, installs whatever they want and often self supports. Unlike a computer that sits on a desk and feel more corporate like, a PDA for example, feels quite personal.
However, IT departments must prepare to manage these mobile devices just like they already manager servers and client computers.
Chad Dickerson of InfoWorld writes My experience getting my phone back up and running surfaces an increasing tension in enterprise IT: Mobile devices are growing increasingly full-featured and mission-critical for end-users, but many IT departments have no strategy for supporting them. I suspect that if your IT operation is at all like ours at InfoWorld, support for handheld devices still falls mostly on the end-user, which was certainly true in my case. To get my Treo 650 running again, I had to rely on years of experience with Palm OS and a healthy dose of the ingrained IT logic I?ve picked up solving all kinds of IT problems day in and day out for years. Not everyone is a CTO, though, and although every salesperson and CEO wants a Treo or a BlackBerry, very few enjoy drilling into technical minutiae at late hours just so they can make phone calls the next day.
On the near horizon, the continued mass adoption of phone PDAs such as the Treo and BlackBerry combined with the real beginnings of 3G network rollout suggests that, for certain mobile functions, handhelds really will provide rich application capabilities in a high-bandwidth environment, supplanting the laptop for key functions. As that happens, how can IT shops relegate handhelds to second-class citizenship with the kind of hacked-together management that had this CTO struggling into the wee hours?
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