Good for Enterprise…But Might Not Be So Good For Me
Before last month, I’d never even heard of Good for Enterprise, or even the Good Technology company. I work for a large financial services company that is very security conscious and micro manages the where and how its employees access email, calendars, and other content. There is no such thing as accessing my work email through a webmail interface, or through an email program on my home computer, or smartphone. Fortunately, they provide me a Blackberry for my job. Yea, I said Blackberry. You know, it’s that company once on top of the enterprise mobility world, that is now dropping like rock.
Last month, a co-worker informed me of plans to offer Good for Enterprise, which allows us employees a way of accessing our email, calendars, contacts (and in the future other content) from our personal smartphones. Needless to say, I was thrilled. This was finally a chance to stop carrying two phones, and to keep the phone I preferred. As soon as it became available, I downloaded and installed the free client application from the Android Market (also available in Apple’s App Store).
After a couple mintues following the instructions for configuration, which basically involves typing in your email address and an assigned PIN number, it began to sync.
The first sync took a while, but that is to be expected when pulling a lot of content over AT&T’s awesomely slow network. I must admit, my initial thoughts were less than stellar. While I technically understood need for this app as a way for companies to give access while maintaining security, it bothered me that I essentially have duplicate email applications on the same phone. Some email in one, and some email in another. Some addresses in one, and some in another. It’s not a highly efficient way to provide access. However, what did impress me was the performance. To date, after the first sync completed, the application performance and the near instant synchronization has been great. The security it provides is pretty solid, encrypting everything end-to-end, preventing prying eyes from gaining access. The application itself locks the user out after a pre-determined time, keeping its content secure, even if the rest of the phone is not.
Overall, I think these guys are poised to really put the hurt on for Research in Motion. Companies who like security and are currently addicted to Crackberry have a new option, and one that doesn’t prescribe an out-of-step-with-reality phone.
I would love to have stopped this post right there. In a happy place. However, time has exposed one thing, which to me is currently a fatal flaw. This application absolutely crushes the battery life on my Android phone. I mean, wow, it’s really bad. I find myself having to check my phone in the afternoon, and wonder how soon I need to plug in, or else no communication for me. As of 20 minutes ago, I uninstalled it. If that can be fixed, or if our particular company allows me to install on a tablet, then i’ll happily try again. Until then, having a working smartphone that lasts from early morning until late evening is more important.
I better go charge up that Blackberry…which at least stays functional for more than a day on one charge.