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Apple leads Google in OS enterprise rankings

But Android makes rapid gains in EMEA, according to Citrix research

Apple leads Google in OS enterprise rankings
Android was the fastest-growing platform in EMEA with an 11% gain from the prior quarter to 36%.

Despite a sharp increase in Google Android device enrollment in Europe, Apple iOS still leads in enterprise mobility worldwide, according to the findings of a report conducted by cloud and virtualisation specialist Citrix.

The Citrix Enterprise Mobility Cloud Report for Q4 2012 is based on aggregate data from Citrix customers who have deployed enterprise mobility in the cloud.

According to the survey, iOS continued to lead in the enterprise segment as the mobile platform of choice with 58% of all global devices enrolled. Android lost two percentage points globally and Windows Mobile remained the same at 7% of devices. Apple's mobile OS is also the preferred platform in many vertical industries, such as retail and restaurants, according to the survey.

However, Android was the fastest-growing platform in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa with an 11% gain from the prior quarter to 36% of the region's devices. Apple saw its iOS penetration drop from 56% to 43% share of enrolled devices in the same region, and Windows Mobile gained 2% share to reach 21%.

The report showed iOS was the preferred platform for enrolled devices in vertical industries, in which mobile users engage their customers one-on-one, such as in retail and restaurants. Android was the preferred platform for those with mobile field service organisations, such as in transportation and utilities. The largest adopters of Android were healthcare (a preponderance of which are home healthcare organisations who have deployed cloud-based enterprise mobility), and transportation. The largest adopters of iOS include the legal and insurance industries.

Organisations have become more aggressive on app blacklisting, with 18% of customers deploying this policy, an increase of 11% from the prior quarter. Often associated with corporate-issued line-of-business use cases, a rise in blacklisting indicates an increase in such deployments.

Typically, organisations blacklist apps they feel pose a threat to data or network security, such as apps that synchronise and share files outside of the corporate network. Some also blacklist apps that are considered a drain on productivity, such as games and social media. This is especially true for devices used for workers doing task-based activities.

The most commonly blacklisted apps were Angry Birds, Facebook, Dropbox, and YouTube, while the most commonly white-listed apps were Evernote, NitroDesk TouchDown, Google Chrome and Adobe Reader. Skype was the only app that made both the blacklist and white-list.

Noman Qadir, acting area VP, Citrix MEA said of the report findings: "2012 saw a rise in the number of business applications available on alternative platforms, with the large developer following of Android and iOS leading the charge. Consumers have become accustomed to downloading apps like Evernote and Skype - as well as tools for collaboration, social networking and storage - onto their smart phones and tablets with ease, and then using them at work.

"This report underlines the growing pressure on IT departments to monitor the complexity of all these proprietary platforms to ensure the business still has some measure of control, or risk complexity, confusion and opening their network to the threat of malicious attack."

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