Android L Could Help Google Crack the Enteprise Market
The Google I/O conference is underway, and, as forecasted here, Android is the star of the event. Not only is Android headed for smartwatches, cars and televisions according to announcements made this at the conference, but it is also going to become much more widely accepted in enterprises if Google has its way.
Android "L," the next generation of the open operating system, is going to arrive this fall, Sundar Pichai, senior vice president of Android, Chrome and applications for Google, said. It features enterprise-focused security and management features, along with productivity tools that businesses can leverage.
With Android, Google is also clearly cozying up to Samsung. Officials at Google I/O said that some upcoming security features for devices include components aimed only at Samsung devices running Samsung's Knox security software. Android is also headed for Samsung TVs, but not all TVs.
According to a Computerworld report:
"Calling the enterprise capabilities 'Android for Work,' [Pichai] said all Android smartphones will have the ability to partition personal data from work data, to make it easier for IT staffs to monitor apps and data being used for work-related purposes. Knox, first introduced by Samsung in early 2013, provides the ability to partition work from personal data on many of its smartphones and tablets."
When Android L arrives, it will be much easier for enterprise users to carry just one Android phone, because APIs are going to be streamlined so that developers can deliver tools for business and personal use.
All new apps for workplaces will be available through the Google Play store and bulk enterprise purchases are expected.
There is also an Android L Developer Preview, which already features lots of new APIs to make Android simpler and more consistent on all types of screens, and Google is out with an extensive post on the new security approaches for Android.
Adding security- and work-related features to Android is a smart move for Google, which hasn't really cracked the enterprise market with Android yet. Many IT departments object to Android for security reasons, in particular. We may see that change, in short order.