June 17, 2013

Apperian's App Remote Control - A Great New Tool for Enterprise Mobile Applications

Apperian, the local mobile application management company, recently announced the launch of a new app tool for its Enterprise Mobile Management platform. The new capability, the iOS App Remote Control, enables enterprise app developers, support teams, and IT departments to manage their enterprise-specific apps for users or devices are in the field.

One of the key developments with the Remote Control is the ability to allow remote access in a unobtrusive and secure way. The product works with enterprise specific applications only and does not work with apps built for the general public.

The concerns for user privacy and worries about the possible misuse of a great tool like the App Remote Control are at the forefront of Apperian’s thoughts while implementing a policy product that can access enterprise workers mobile devices.

In a press release announcing the deployment of the Remote Control App, Apperian explains the safeguards built into the tool:

“User’s privacy is maintained by alerting them to when an app is being controlled and allowing them to disconnect at any time. Additionally, only apps that have the App Remote Control policy applied to them may be controlled remotely by authorized staff. Authorized individuals using Apperian App Remote Control only have access to the company apps, and not to employees’ personal apps or data.”

Alan Murray, Apperian’s Senior Vice President of Product, explained to me how Apperian built a tool that would be welcomed by both enterprise mobile users and support desks/IT departments. “A while ago, we built a capability for doing remote control for iOS devices,” he said. “It was well received, but probably skated a little too close to what some vendors in the industry were comfortable with us releasing.” Murray added, “We worked very closely with those folks to find a way to do remote control capability that was not an exploitive thing...and more importantly, was something that you could turn on or turn off.”

The App Remote Control is ideal for troubleshooting enterprise software issues for companies with large numbers of mobile workers using company-specific software. It allows real time access for tech support to users' devices in the field and also has capabilities to connect with kiosks and point of sale devices as well. As Murray said, the Remote Control allows remote collaboration for “any type of enterprise application that has any type of complexity to it.”

In the press release announcing the new Remote Control capabilities, Apperian’s CTO, Carlos Montero-Luque explained the great benefits of the tool. “We know that IT departments struggle to support mobile employees because they can’t see what’s happening on those devices, which causes major headaches for everyone,” he said. “Apperian App Remote Control eliminates this pain point because those that are authorized can remotely interact with an app as if they were physically holding the device. This benefits those workers who are not always in the office, but need help troubleshooting an issue quickly, or for mobile app developers who want to see user issues first-hand or check a new app version and make sure bugs are fixed.”

Dennis Keohane is a staff writer for VentureFizz.  You can follow Dennis on Twitter (@DBKeohane) by clicking here.