AT&T Toggle: IT’s way of ruining Angry Birds at work

Bosses hate low productivity, and workers hate spending all of their time in front of spreadsheets. A lot of people take Facebook breaks, or play a little game on their phones when they’re tired of slaving away at their desk. AT&T looks to end all that nonsense. Toggle, an app for Android 2.2 and higher, allows IT to separate work from play on your phone or tablet.

Once installed, the app safeguards business data by running like a different user. In Play mode, your phone works normally; texting, apps, video, etc all work. Enter Work mode and you can access your business email, calendar and any work-related applications that might store private data. For a lot of medium to large companies, custom applications to track data can be a huge help. Access to important information on the fly can really speed up workflow.

On top of keeping work and play separate, Toggle allows you in-depth access to your companies data without having to carry two devices. According to research, 60% of companies allow employees to use their personal phones for work-related business. While a great money-saver, this can cause issues with security. Toggle allows data to be remotely wiped by IT if the employee loses the phone or leaves the company.

If you allow 1000 employees to bring their own phones with Toggle, you’re saving a lot of money (both on devices and phone plans) and with a unified app to manage the data across those phones, you’re simplifying the IT process. You’ve also got a phone that you’re comfortable with, unlike Blackberry enterprise users. And while it may seem lame to let IT in on your personal device, it may make you more productive. Let’s just keep our eyes peeled for security flaws in this app.

Press Release:

Go Ahead – Bring Your Own Device to Work

Switch between work and play with a few quick taps on your smartphone or tablet. Carry one device, loaded with your favorite games and apps as well as your business email, contacts and calendars. And imagine your company not minding one bit.

All this is coming from AT&T*.

AT&T Toggle separates and safeguards business data on employees’ mobile devices, creating a distinct work mode apart from the typical personal mode in a single smartphone or tablet. AT&T is the first U.S. carrier to announce this type of application, with availability expected before the end of 2011.

Personal mode: When not working, send text messages to friends, watch TV shows and movies, and play games on your mobile device as you otherwise would. Personal activities remain segregated.
Work mode: If it’s time to buckle down and focus on business, employees can enter their work environment. In this mode, users can access corporate email, applications, calendars and more, just as they would on a company-provided device.

“Our research shows that approximately 50 million employees in the U.S. alone could benefit from business mobile applications,” said John Stankey, President and CEO, AT&T Business Solutions. “Mobile applications delivered in a cloud computing environment can transform business operations. AT&T is focused on integrating advanced technologies – like cloud and mobility – to create valuable solutions for our customers.”

Many Connected Devices, Few IT Resources

According to a July 2011 Forrester Research, Inc. report, nearly 60 percent of companies allow employees to use personal devices for work and provide IT support for some or all of these devices.1

The “bring your own device” trend can benefit businesses in a number of ways, saving on costs associated with company-owned equipment and satisfying employees’ desire for flexibility. At the same time, IT personnel often struggle to maintain control over dozens of different smartphones and tablets, stretching their time and budgets to the limit.

With the number of mobile applications projected to reach 1.3 million by the end of this year – as opposed to only 75,000 applications for personal computers – managing employee-owned devices is not getting any easier.2

“When it comes to connected devices, one size doesn’t fit all,” said Chris Hill, Vice President, Advanced Mobility Solutions, AT&T Business Solutions. “People want to use their own smartphones and tablets for work, but that practice can create major headaches for businesses’ IT departments. AT&T Toggle helps resolve the issue in a simple, affordable manner.”

AT&T Toggle offers a convenient web portal that allows IT administrators to:

Manage which employees have access to which company resources.
Add, update and delete business applications on employees’ personal devices.
Wipe all corporate information stored in work mode if an employee leaves the company or loses his or her device.

Designed to strip away complexity for both businesses and their employees, AT&T Toggle can be used on devices running Android 2.2 and higher, and with any service provider.

AT&T customers have already indicated interest in this type of solution. For one organization that provides company-owned devices to more than 1,000 employees, the CIO is exploring a new policy, which would allow employees to use personal smartphones and tablets to connect to the corporate network. With AT&T Toggle, the IT department could manage work-related functions remotely, controlling mobile and security preferences based on employee location and responsibilities. The CIO can protect business data – his number one priority – while simultaneously saving on the costs of issuing separate devices to employees.

Source: Engadget

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