Webinar: Accelerating SharePoint for Mobile Solutions on the AWS Cloud

Slalom Consultant Joel Forman

Slalom Consultant Joel Forman specializes in cloud computing and the Windows Azure Platform.

I wanted to take the opportunity to post about an exciting upcoming live webinar that is being co-delivered by Slalom Consulting and Amazon Web Services entitled Accelerating SharePoint for Mobile Solutions on the AWS Cloud.

On Wednesday, August 15th at 10:00 AM PST, we will bring several emerging topics together around mobility and the cloud. You will have the opportunity to learn more about how to make SharePoint applications available to your mobile users using the AWS cloud directly from an AWS Solution Architect. Then, we will demonstrate how they can quickly and securely mobilize SharePoint content with our SharePoint Mobile Accelerator. The Accelerator is a framework that can target both on-premise and cloud SharePoint implementations, and allows for rapid development of custom iPhone & iPad applications to enable your growing mobile workforce while maintaining corporate security standards.

Here are the individuals that will be presenting during this live session: Read more of this post

In A Universe of Connected Devices, The Three-Screen Dream is Finally a Reality

Slalom Consultant Jeff Barber

Jeff Barber is a Seattle-based leader in Slalom Consulting’s mobility solutions practice. He's a mobile technology expert with deep experience helping clients “operationalize” mobile technologies.

In the late 1990’s my clients and I talked at length about the “three-screen” dream—the envisioned ability of telecom carriers to deliver voice, data, the Web, broadcast television content, and advertising on cell phones, PCs, and TVs.

In 2011 the three-screen dream has been realized. It’s rapidly making its way into your home and businesses all around you, and its role is visibly expanding:

  • In January I had the opportunity to attend CES 2011, where I spent a day walking the main hall to check out what the global major electronics manufacturers are prototyping for release to market in the next several years.
  • In April, I attended the Mobile Breakfast in Seattle, where a panel of industry experts from diverse vantage points in the carrier ecosystem offered their views on the evolution of connected devices.

These two events caused me to re-think my definition of three-screen applications. What I discovered was that the three-screen reality now extends Read more of this post

Making the Case for BlackBerry®

Daniel Maycock is one of Slalom’s acknowledged thought leaders in the realm of new and emerging technology.

Though the iPhone is one of the greatest phones from a breadth standpoint, the BlackBerry is a true marvel from a depth standpoint. From being able to do simple things like easily forwarding meeting notices, to checking free/busy calendars from other team members while tracking down a particular attachment from a particular day–though Android & iOS both have exchange integration, there’s just no beating a BlackBerry.

Now the argument is often made around apps, that devices live and die by Read more of this post

A Microsoft Renaissance

Slalom Consultant Greg Martin

Greg Martin is a member of the Slalom National Mobility team which incubates emerging technology solutions in areas such as mobility, user experience and alternative application hosting.

It seems to me that Microsoft is going through a bit of a renaissance as of late.  Microsoft is a company that I feel no matter where your technology preferences lie, you’ve got to give them their due respect for, frankly, creating the industry we work in everyday.  Over the last 10 years or so it has seemed to me that Microsoft hasn’t been able to catch a break in a world of Googles and iPhones, but here we are in 2010, and to me, it looks like they are turning it around.

Search

Google hasn’t had much of a competitor in the search space for a while, and I’ll admit, when I first heard Microsoft’s latest effort was going to be called “Bing” I assumed it was yet another re-branding effort that wouldn’t amount to much.  Well I was wrong about that, at least if you look at their market share numbers which have been increasing steadily since launch.  I use Bing Travel all the time, I had been a fan of the technology since it launched originally as Seattle based startup Farecast, and their iPhone app is really quite good.

Windows

Windows Vista received a lot of criticism when it launched.  Many IT departments simply refused to adopt it, sticking with their tried & true Windows XP.  Windows 7 appears to have Read more of this post

Mobile Video and Advertising

Slalom Consultant Greg Martin

Greg Martin is a member of the Slalom National Mobility team which incubates emerging technology solutions in areas such as mobility, user experience and alternative application hosting.

Slalom Consulting extends its outreach to Midwest executives and the online community through an article on Mobile Video and Advertising, published today in Corp! Magazine online. The article was written by Slalom blogger Jeff Barber.

Follow Greg on Twitter: @slalomdev.

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More on iPad in the Enterprise

Slalom Consultant Greg Martin

Greg Martin is a member of the Slalom National Mobility team which incubates emerging technology solutions in areas such as mobility, user experience and alternative application hosting.

I’ve been quoted in the SF Chronicle in a recent article discussing iPad in the enterprise:

Slalom Consulting, which builds software for enterprise clients, has preordered several iPads. The company plans to use them not only to help develop applications for the device, but also to present information to clients during meetings.

“We demo a lot of things on our handset, but it’s not a great experience,” said Greg Martin. “It’ll be good to use the iPad as a demonstration and presentation tool.”

Read more:
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/03/28/BUJ41CLUBP.DTL#ixzz0jXMT1rH7

The conversation we had went more in depth and we covered many of the points I made in my earlier post, such as how I feel that, due to the existence of the SDK on launch day, the iPad has a leg up on the iPhone from an enterprise perspective.

- Greg

iPad in the Enterprise

Slalom Consultant Greg Martin

Greg Martin is a member of the Slalom National Mobility team which incubates emerging technology solutions in areas such as mobility, user experience and alternative application hosting.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but Apple launched a new product this week.  The iPad promises to fill the gap between your desktop/laptop and your phone as a multi-functional personal media center.  For months the rumors have been building and expectations for this device have reached extreme heights.  Due to those high expectations, rumors that our minds would be blown by how you interact with the device or by features it would have, many are coming down pretty hard on it.

This reminds me a lot of when the iPhone was first released.  The technology was cool, groundbreaking even, but there were still a lot of critics talking about what it didn’t do.  That was magnified when it came to enterprise.  It took a year for the iPhone to get Exchange support.  However, with the release of iPhone OS 2.0 we got Exchange plus a whole lot more with the addition of the iPhone SDK and the App Store.  The iPhone SDK changed nearly all of the “it cant”s to “it can”s almost overnight.  In the enterprise space, new and powerful mobile messaging, BI and CRM solutions are cropping up constantly.  And the ability for companies to create their own custom solutions, specifically tailored to how they do business, should not be discounted.

With the iPad, the hardware is not as groundbreaking as we experienced with the iPhone.  We’ve all become used to our iPhones and iPod touches and the impressive experience they provide.  The iPad is an extension of the iPhone and one can certainly come up with niche examples that would benefit from it, such as healthcare and education.

So does the iPad have a place in the enterprise?  I think so, but I think it’s up to the software developers and service providers to unlock that potential.

- Greg

My iPhone Enterprise Wish List

Slalom Consultant Greg Martin

Greg Martin is a member of the Slalom National Mobility team which incubates emerging technology solutions in areas such as mobility, user experience and alternative application hosting.

At Slalom we don’t dictate what mobile devices our consultants use.  Given the choice, about 40% of our consultants have chosen the iPhone, making it the most popular handset at Slalom.  We have developed a few internal applications for the iPhone using the enterprise deployment model, including an app called Cards.  Cards is a global address book that allows us to get in touch with any other consultant and understand more about them, such as the market they work in and their current client.

Distributing a consumer application through the AppStore is great.  Once your app is submitted and approved, it is there for anyone to install, either from their computer or over the air directly onto your phone.  Alternatively, the enterprise distribution method (similar to the ad-hoc method) makes it challenging for our IT organization to manage application deployments and upgrades across a growing user base.

Here is my wish list to improve enterprise distribution, and interestingly enough, a few of these requests are Read more of this post

iPhone vs. Android, a Developer’s Perspective

Slalom Consultant Greg Martin

Greg Martin is a member of the Slalom National Mobility team which incubates emerging technology solutions in areas such as mobility, user experience and alternative application hosting.

I should start this post with a bit of a disclaimer, I love my iPhone.  I’ve had one since the initial launch and the bulk of my projects since then have been iPhone related.  That being said, aside from it being my job to be knowledgeable in other platforms, I am also personally very interested in other mobile technologies.

A couple of weeks ago I received my Android Dev Phone 2 from the Android Market.  Any developer with an Android Market account ($25 a year) can order an unlocked development phone from Google for developing applications.  Right off the bat I found this to be a nice difference.  Without another contract I could start writing software and testing directly on a device, and if I do need to test on the network I can just pop in a sim from another device (be careful about data charges however).

The Hardware

The Android Dev Phone 2 is the HTC Google Ion (aka the HTC Magic or T-Mobile myTouch), specs can be found here, I will be comparing to my iPhone 3GS.  The Android device is physically smaller than the iPhone, and I had never really considered my iPhone to be bulky until setting them side-by-side.  Aside from the touch screen the Android device has a few more buttons than the iPhone, Home, Menu, Call, Back, Search, Hangup and a scroll ball.  Because of the touch screen, I don’t see any reason or value added with the scroll ball, maybe for one handed operation, but even then you still just gravitate to the screen.

It may be unfair to compare performance against the 3GS, but even compared to the 3G the OS is not nearly as snappy as the iPhone.  Apps tend to launch much more slowly and general responsiveness always seems to have a bit of a lag.  I am curious how this will compare on the upcoming Nexus device which is supposed to have a much faster processor.

The other major difference is Read more of this post

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