How to say yes to (almost) any smartphone

Employees want iPhones, Androids, and other devices beyond the BlackBerry; here's how to safely welcome them

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The chart below gives a quick guide to the capabilities of each smartphone platform for the four major business categories. Solid red means the capabilities are supported natively in the device and/or enterprise mail server (including free client apps for the server). Dashed red means some capabilities are not supported. Yellow means that extra-cost software, servers, and/or hardware are needed. An "X" means none of the requirements are supported.

Smartphone enterprise support chart
How each smartphone platform compares

The bottom line: You can say yes a lot
By now, I hope it's clear that most businesses can say yes to many of today's smartphones. Although the minimal capabilities of WebOS and the Android operating system largely limit their use to Category 1 companies, businesses in Category 2 and Category 3 can clearly support the iPhone, not just the traditional BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, and Nokia Symbian devices.

So now the question is not whether your business should say yes to smartphones but what value it seeks from their broad use. That's a better question to ask and an even better one to help the business answer.

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This article, "How to say yes to (almost) any smartphone," was originally published at Follow the latest developments in mobile computing at and read InfoWorld's Mobile Edge blog.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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