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Top 10 Takeaways on Industry Day at Connect Atlanta 2016

  • Ashley Speagle By

Editor’s note: Connect Atlanta 2016 has come and gone, but you can relive all the announcements and tech excitement from your desk anytime. Watch all the Connect Atlanta keynotes on demand here.

Mobile devices and apps fundamentally changed the way we consume services across every industry: retail, healthcare, education, aviation, financial services and even government. For IT, this means “we have to think differently,” said Sumit Dhawan, senior vice president for VMware End-User Computing, today in the opening keynote of Industry Day at Connect Atlanta 2016.

Industry workshops at Connect bring IT professionals together from these various industries to share their own mobile challenges and solutions. The stories shared at Industry Day also help VMware AirWatch improve industry solutions to better deliver business value and enhance both our personal and professional lives.

Here are 10 of those lessons learned at Connect Atlanta today.

1. Why is healthcare going mobile? It’s all about patient care.

It’s an amazing time. Smart devices track our heart rates, blood sugars and more. Genetic sequencing can predict diseases and customize care plans. By 2025, there could be 6 trillion medical sensors providing a wealth of information about people and their physical conditions.

But what good is all that information if patients don’t use it to change their health for the better? Fewer than 25% of heart attack patients change their lifestyles—and that’s after a heart attack, not a piece of software telling you that there’s a chance you’ll develop a disease.

Mobile technology puts healthcare in the hands of the patient, where we can use it every day to change our lives for the better.

[Related: Transforming Healthcare: VITAS Embraces the Power of Mobile Devices]

2. Seconds saved logging in can mean seconds more to save lives.

Healthcare IT leaders on a customer panel today agreed that the biggest driver of mobility in healthcare is improving the quality of life for patients. For IT, that translates into speeding up login times with simpler authentication to ensure that technology is as unobtrusive as possible to doctor-patient interactions.

Mobile technology is also increasingly critical to improving accuracy in healthcare. After all, it’s a lot harder for digital information to be wrong than handwritten documents that could be misread.

3. “The two biggest risks facing government are passwords and shadow IT.”

IT and mobility experts from public agencies of all shapes and sizes gathered together at the Connect 2016 Industry Workshop for Government. The key topics were enabling worker productivity, mobilizing end users and adopting next-gen technologies like Windows 10. Across all of these goals, however, was security.

In “The Balancing Act: A Panel Discussion on Mobile Security in Government,” VMware experts Christopher Campbell, Cameron Clack and John Britton tackled this universal issue. While security concerns are not unique to government, the way agencies tackle information security is unique due to the sensitive nature of its workforce, data and regulations.

“The number one enemy of security is complexity. Eighty percent of our customers are talking about enabling productivity with VMware Workspace ONE. For government and every other industry, the fringe benefit of this new digital workspace is next-gen integrated security.”
—Cameron Clack, VMware Government Solutions Sales Engineer

[Learn more about VMware’s Secure Digital Workspace for Government here.]

4. Education IT pros must address multiple use cases.

“What makes education interesting is that it encompasses so many use cases from across industries,” said Preston Winn, director of business development for education at VMware End-User Computing. “Whether it’s retail with their school stores, healthcare with college of medicine or medical facilities, government with local law enforcement on campus and of course education with students—there are so many different use cases you have to address.”

Dr. David Kafitz from the learning counsel outlined how educational institutions can prepare for and embrace mobile technology in the classroom to drive a new model for educators. From online educational resources and machine learning to on-demand tutors and beyond, school systems have a lot to consider as they seek to make education more accessible for all students.

VMware leaders Noah Wasmer and Kevin Strohmeyer then provided an overview of Workspace ONE and how educational organizations can embrace the latest technologies from VMware to accelerate their mobility programs. Attendees later heard from several higher education and K-12 organizations about their unique use cases.

[Related: Insights into Higher Education IT: A Renewed Focus on Students]

5. Mobility is a balancing act of innovation and safety in aviation.

Even innovation as seemingly small as upgrading to the latest release of iOS can be painfully daunting, and risky, in the aviation industry. Anything that slows down operations or, worse, puts passengers’ safety or flight security at risk, is a no go.

That’s one of the reasons that aviation sometimes can’t innovate as fast as other industries. The main priority for airlines is to safely get passengers from Point A to Point B. Innovation is often icing on the cake.


6. “AirWatch is easy to work with.”

United Bank has completed 33 acquisitions since 1983. Since 2011, they’ve been growing with AirWatch as an important part of their acquisition strategy. Messaging and Collaboration Specialist Willem Bagchus noted a few traits that make AirWatch a great partner for a fast-growing bank:

  • First is reliability. If bank executives’ mobile services such as email and document sharing aren’t working correctly, especially during acquisition talks, “We get thunderbolts from Mt. Olympus,” said Willem.
  • He also noted that United Bank’s AirWatch footprint has grown as the bank grows, because of the ease of adding on services as they are needed. It’s simple to onboard large groups of new employees thanks to AirWatch integration with standard directory services.
  • And finally, Willem said he knew AirWatch was a winning company when they were able to support the bank’s email setup with Micro Focus GroupWise using GMS/ActiveSync—not exactly an everyday email setup.

[Related: Expert Predictions: IoT & Mobile Banking Trends 2016]

7. Yesterday, accessing work outside the corporate network was impossible. Today, you have options.

In the past, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) apps, like Salesforce were difficult for IT to secure and for users to access. SaaS apps didn’t connect to your Active Directory, and so users were required to create a (often weak but easy to remember) password for them all. When employees left the company, IT had no way to revoke their access to those work apps.

Workspace ONE enables IT to provide users access to any app from anywhere for today’s multi-cloud era. Workspace ONE offers multiple ways to access apps to meet a variety of use cases: unmanaged devices, managed devices and managed workspaces with unified endpoint management.

[Related: The Digital Workspace Journey: VMware Workspace ONE]

8. About half of all online retail traffic in the U.S. is mobile.

The fourth largest sales day in the U.S. last year: Amazon Prime Day. However, that doesn’t mean ecommerce is retailers’ enemy.

It’s an opportunity to be the best by embedding information and driving smarter decision making through technology—and not just smartphones and tablets. Augmented reality (AR) technology, for example, is easier than ever for retailers to start using in stores. Technologies, like AR, are finally good enough that they are actually saving time for the consumer.

To stay ahead of the next big things, all you really need to do is look at the most recent upgrades to operating systems, she added. As consumers are introduced to intelligent technologies (like contextual messaging and enhanced connectivity between apps and devices), you can bet that they’ll be expecting them in the places they shop soon, too.

[Related: (Infographic) The Undeniably Mobile Consumer | Retail Technology Trends]

9. 19-of-the-top 20 U.S. retailers use AirWatch.

The Secure Digital Workspace for Retail is VMware’s newest retail solution, powered by Workspace ONE. The Digital Workspace centralizes IT management, enables out-of-the-box mobile experiences, creates a consistent experience across retail locations, helps IT securely deliver collaboration and productivity tools and helps IT enhance customer engagement. With AirWatch technology integrated, you can make a sale anywhere.

10. By 2020, there will be six times more intelligent devices per human.

The explosion of the Internet of Things (IoT) will impact every industry. These connected devices are already in our homes, and sure enough, they’ll become common in the workplace, too.

For IT, this means all of those security issues we see in consumer IoT devices will also enter the enterprise. IT needs to prepare for this new reality.

AirWatch has become the defacto standard for mobile solutions, Sumit said, and as mobility continues evolving, AirWatch will continue to help you, IT, stay in the driver’s seat of digital transformation.

Follow #AWConnect on Twitter for more insights from Day 2 of the leading enterprise mobility event.

Ashley Speagle

Ashley Speagle

Ashley is a content marketing specialist for VMware AirWatch.

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