Management, monitoring, and reporting seem to take up a large part of the daily activities of the datacenter IT staff, so the ability to use a mobile device to fill some of the information needs of the IT would be one of those things differentiates a product from a growing field of contenders. With their latest version of their private cloud management solution, Novell goes so far as to add your iPhone as a management tool.
The Novell Cloud Manager is designed to give the user flexibility in managing and administering both new and existing virtual hosts and their client operating systems. Unlike most tools of this nature, Novell claims that the system is designed not just for the use of IT, but also for all business stakeholders who utilize the virtualized infrastructure.
Detailed control over the views and actions that any given user of the tool can see makes the distribution of the tool outside of normal IT channels practical. Allowing business stakeholders to monitor their pieces of the cloud computing infrastructure can give them a better feel for how resources are used and what IT is doing to improve their business lives.
Making a native iPhone application available will actually encourage the non-IT business users to keep themselves informed as to the status of the back-end of their business applications and eventually reduce the amount of time that It needs to spend explaining the impact of their infrastructure work on the business front end.
From the IT perspective, a native iPhone application that provides real-time console information is much more valuable than simple text or email alerting that IT has grown accustomed to. Many IT pros currently use a remote console application to permit them to do some management and mobnitoring from their smartphones; a dedicated application that more simply performs the same functionality is definitely worth a look.