Webalo, billing itself The App for Enterprise, announced today the general availability of its cloud and on-premise technology designed for quick configuring and deploying of mobile devices within the enterprise.
Driven by what Webalo's CEO Peter Price calls a shift away from "controlled mobility applications" that were not built to scale, Webalo has developed, over the last couple of years, a subscription-based cloud service enabling enterprises to securely connect databases to any number of mobile devices through Webalo Pro Service. Webalo Cloud is a free service that provides similar capabilities for up to three users' mobile devices. Webalo Pro Appliance is an on-premise, subscription-based service for an unlimited number of mobile connections.
"The enterprise is now dealing with a very different situation," Price says. "[With] the kinds of apps and requirements that the enterprise faces…if you apply the kind of technology complexity that was applied to building…controlled mobile applications to this world, it really doesn't scale from an IT perspective."
Because of the uptick in consumer devices entering the enterprise, Gartner Research has called "bring your own device" (BYOD) programs the most radical shift in business computing since the introduction of the PC to the workplace.
"If you go back to the enterprise and say, 'This is the device I want to use,'" as Price puts it, it can open up a whole new can of worms in regard to infrastructure, support costs and manpower, and security.
But early adopters of Webalo's services are noticing benefits, as well. Volkswagen, for instance, had originally deployed an inventory management application tied on the back end with SAP that did allot the German automobile company a return on investment, but which had tedious deployment times.
"The key thing from VW's perspective, as it is with all our customers, was about the simplicity of deployment—it literally took them just a couple of hours" to implement Webalo and connect enterprise devices, used by members of Volkswagen's corporate leasing sales team, who are then able to access product inventory and delivery information right from smartphones. Webalo Pro Cloud is available for $99 per user per year and Webalo Pro Appliance costs $150 per user per year. Webalo Gateway acts as a security buffer, controlling the flow of communication between Webalo cloud servers and a user's enterprise resources.