Sales automation, location-based apps top enterprise wishlist

Sales automation, location-based apps top enterprise wishlist

Summary: Asian enterprise mobile users most want sales force automation and location-based applications while on the go, say vendors.


Sales force automation and location-based services are at the top of Asian enterprise mobile users' wishlists, say Microsoft and Sun.

Grace Ho, Microsoft's director of business segment marketing of its mobile communications business, Asia-Pacific, Greater Japan and China, told ZDNet Asia in an interview there has been "increased interest" around enterprise mobility applications that perform sales functions which include access to order and delivery information, providing sales quotes on the go and processing sales transactions.

Naveen Asrani, manager, technology outreach at Sun Microsystems Asia-Pacific too said reporting, data warehousing and sales force automation applications rank within the top five applications demanded by customers.

Location-based services also topped the list. Ho said businesses want the ability to track workers' locations and dispatch them prioritized to customers' needs. Mobile warriors also want access to reports and corporate information while outside of the office.

Ho said: "When customers think about enterprise mobility, they are looking beyond mobile messaging solutions...they are increasingly looking at mobile line-of-business (LOB) [applications] as a key driver for their business."

She noted that enterprises have moved, over the years, from simply porting applications to mobile platforms, to replacing traditional paper-based activities such as managing electronic medical records (EMRs), mobile banking and mobile dispatching and tracking--with their phones.

Sun's Asrani too said mobile phones and their applications have in recent years emerged as "key access devices" to both coordinate and manage corporate information and processes.

Lee Chuk Mun, staff engineer at Sun, said Sun's developers are currently focused on creating Web 2.0 and rich Internet applications. "As this space is still in its infancy, there is a lot of potential in it as well as a high level of development going on," said Lee.

Along with this trend, developers are also moving toward dynamic languages such as Ruby, Groovy and Python, added Lee.

Sun announced last month it will enable Java applications to run on Apple's iPhone, opening up the possibility of enterprise applications showing up on the device.

Topics: Security, Apps, Enterprise Software, Mobility, Software

Victoria Ho

About Victoria Ho

Victoria Ho is a tech journalist based in Singapore, whose writing has appeared in publications such as ZDNet, TechCrunch, and The Business Times. When she's not obsessing about IT, you can find her tinkering with music and daydreaming about which guitar to buy next.

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