As the director of a successful IT Company I find it necessary to evaluate new technologies and compare against existing solutions, I have written this review to help businesses decide which platform will be best for them as we move from feature phones to smartphones for all of our employees
Apple redefined the smartphone category with the original iPhone, at the time the only reliable smart phones were from Nokia and Blackberry, but the operating systems were clunky, connecting to WIFI was near on impossible and although the push email worked well on the Blackberry it did and still does require a secondary service to plug into your email server, and all mails pass through Blackberry servers and as we have experienced recently, these servers can go down leaving millions of users without email for days.
IOS Changed everything, the phones run a cut down version of Mac OSX bringing beautiful graphics and transitions from the Mac desktop, the IOS based phones are a real pleasure to use, they are locked down by Apple in such a way that it is almost impossible for users to create problems with the phones core systems.
The App store
A great feature of the IOS platform is the App store, which is second to none for content which means that you can almost always find an app to suit your business needs, however there is currently no way in the UK to centrally manage or control your app accounts, you cannot push Apps to devices or control what users install and uninstall
Functionality, Apps, Huge device choice, Price
Price, Device choice, No Central Control, Its as much a play thing as a business tool, No way to centrally manage Apps without 3rd Party software, Limited Calendar functionality
Android launched close after IOS and is a similar OS, some say it is copied from IOS, the 2 main differences are Widgets and the openness of the OS.
Widgets allow users to add useful program snippets to the desktop as shown below, on the left is an example of Widgets, the right screen shot is of standard program icons similar to IOS
The Android system is not as polished as the IOS system, it can be sticky, jerky and even lock up from time to time, although some might see the open nature of the OS as a benefit, it is also its downfall as users can install themes and apps that the hardware is not powerful enough to run, causing the handset to crash and lockup, however if the device remains with the themes and settings that it came with from new then they tend to be reliable.
The Samsung Galaxy S3 is the leading handset at the moment (June 2012) it is the first handset in my opinion to beat the iPhone for features design and usability, much of this is down to its Quad Core CPU and 1GB Ram which would have been a powerful PC only a few years ago
Functionality, Apps, Huge device choice, Price
Ease of use, No Central Control, Its as much a play thing as a business tool, No way to centrally manage Apps without 3rd Party software, Some devices may have limited enterprise capabilities, Sticky and Jerky, Users have almost unlimited access to the OS
Windows Phone 7
The newcomer, this OS is completely different it uses the Microsoft Metro Interface (screenshot below) and allows full enterprise control via Windows Embedded Device Manager 2011 some of its features are listed below
- Deploy, Update and manage
- Streamline Insight and Control
- Custom-tailored solutions
- Enhanced IT infrastructure control
- Comprehensive Software Distribution and Updates
- Device integration
Windows Phone 7 OS, is in my opinion the most pleasurable to use and offers features that neither of the other 2 offer, however from an enterprise point of view we believe it to be a no brainer, with built in apps such as MS Dynamics, Sharepoint, Office, Internet explorer it becomes the business OS of choice which will be even better when Windows Phone 8 is launched October 2012
For Windows Phone 7
Ease of use, Functionality, Device choice, Price, Enterprise Functionality, Enterprise Security, User Interface, Microsoft have invested in Nokia who are well known for producing high quality handsets and devices
Against Windows Phone 7
Limited Apps available at this time, No sister Tablet until October
All three options have basic Exchange controls when using active Sync to Push Email, Calendars, Tasks and Contacts as shown below
IOS is the choice for home users, its a great OS but lacks enterprise features, Microsoft Windows Phone is the OS of choice and will continue to improve as Windows Phone 8 is launched late 2012 I see no place for the Android OS at this time as it is too close to IOS and IOS is a better operating system, more polished and reliable