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Mobile data protection drives EMM market growth

EMM adoption is on the rise, as customers seek out these platforms' data protection capabilities, such as remote wipe and file-level security.

When it comes to EMM offerings, IT pros value features that protect corporate content, which has fueled market growth.

Other features -- such as single sign-on and user-based data access controls -- have also caught IT's attention. Enterprise mobility management (EMM) advancements in file-level security are important for businesses trying to keep up with compliance regulations and growing security threats.

"The huge risk is: Do users have devices with critical data on them?" said Jon Booth, IT director at Bear Valley Community Healthcare District in Big Bear Lake, Calif. "You hear about the horror stories all the time. What [businesses] want from EMM in that case is the ability to be able to make that info go away or be inaccessible."

The EMM market grew by 26.9% year over year in 2015, and that growth will continue, according to research firm IDC. The device encryption, remote wipe, remote device locking and GPS tracking features of EMM are increasingly important tools to help IT protect confidential information, Booth said.

"If there isn't EMM software in place, businesses may be ignoring their compliance requirement and living dangerously," he said.

Users accessing corporate data on their personal smartphones is another huge challenge EMM can address, said Doug Grosfield, president and CEO of Five Nines IT Solutions, an IT consultancy in Kitchener, Ont.

"The sheer volume of devices as part of people's BYOD strategies presents a risk that is, by and large, understated and didn't have the attention paid to it that it deserves," Grosfield said.  "We are starting to see a swing in that."

Today's EMM platforms can help IT prevent data leakage with device tracking, content filtering and the ability to provision approved apps certain users can access, he added.

Where the EMM market stands

If there isn't EMM software in place, businesses may be ignoring their compliance requirement and living dangerously.
Jon BoothIT director, Bear Valley Community Healthcare District

EMM controls less than 30% of mobile devices in the business world, IDC said. Still, large vendors such as VMware and Microsoft have seen significant growth over the last year due to increased brand awareness and product strength, said Phil Hochmuth, program director at IDC.

VMware AirWatch was the EMM market share leader in 2015, with 16.6% of the market and 83.8% year-over-year growth, according to IDC. Microsoft, which holds 7.6% of the market, had the largest year-over-year growth at 214.2%.

An additional driver of many EMM platforms' growth is IT can use its unified endpoint management capabilities to manage Windows 10 PCs and mobile devices together. This approach makes life easier for IT admins, Hochmuth said.

Microsoft's market share increase is largely due to the inclusion of its Intune and Enterprise Mobility Suite (EMS) products in licenses for other popular products, such as Office 365. Existing Microsoft customers may consider EMS because they're already paying for it, Hochmuth said.

"It wouldn't surprise me if Microsoft is in a higher positon [by the end of this year]," Hochmuth said.

EMM market leaders


  Market share

  VMware AirWatch










Source: IDC

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