“BYOD is here and you can’t stop it.” – These are the first words that stare at you when you go to the BYOD section on Gartner’s website. According to a recent report by them, in the next four years, 50% of companies across the world will implement bring-your-own-device programs. According to another study by DSCI & Cisco, two thirds of IT security leaders in India are already encouraging employees to bring their own devices. The business case is simple – on the one hand, it increases employee productivity and on the other, it also saves significant costs for companies. Garter estimates that companies spend $600 per employee, per year on employer-provided devices.
That said, data security continues to be the single largest concern that companies have while considering a full blown implementation of BYOD policies. Gartner warns that “Through 2014, employee-owned devices will be compromised by malware at more than double the rate of corporate-owned devices.” The DSCI-Cisco report for India further elaborates on the challenge – “Threat and malware protection (86%), quarantine of non-standard devices (83%), enforceability of network policy on mobile devices (83%), encryption of communication and data (79%), and security scanning of mobile devices (75%) were key concerns for the protection of the endpoints by the respondents of the survey.”
This dichotomy creates an exciting opportunity for B2B solutions focusing on BYOD enablement. Cashing in on this opportunity is Bangalore-based startup, eSimply Office. The startup recently launched their flagship product, Simply Office, an Android-based mobile app which allows users to seamlessly switch their devices between Home & Office modes. The app addresses the security issue by allowing enterprises to control apps that can be installed on the user’s enterprise profile. For users, it offers an Enterprise apps Dashboard through which they can access their favorite office apps such as evernote, yammer, enterprise email, calendar and file manager. It also provides easy intranet connectivity through VPN and allows seamless mobility of apps across various tablet profiles. It also provides customized news based on the user’s interests and preferences.
YourStory recently caught up with Kusum Shukla Bhatia, Co-founder & Head of Marketing for eSimply Office to understand a little more about the startup and their offering:
YS: What is the monetization model for Simply Office?
Kusum: We provide Simply Office with the freemium model with some basic free functionality. We are offering in-app billing for incremental advanced features like separating business contacts (and storing it on cloud), office voice assistant and secure VPN connectivity. We are also offering Simply Office as a group buy for SMBs.
YS: What is your market size and competitive landscape like?
Kusum: By 2017, 25 percent of enterprises will have an enterprise app store for managing corporate-sanctioned apps on PCs and mobile devices. Enterprise app stores promise greater control over the apps used by employees, greater control over software expenditures and greater negotiating leverage with app vendors, but this greater control is only possible if the enterprise app store is widely adopted.
Large enterprises and system integrators are coming up with products in this space. Competitive products launched by large enterprises that started during the time Simply Office was launched are not doing as well as the Simply Office app.
YS: How is Simply Office different from other solutions in this space?
Kusum: There are two major competitors in this space:
- Samsung Knox – is a product by Samsung. Knox is an enterprise app store just like Simply Office with a front end that shows the app store to the user. However, the product is just supported on Samsung devices. Given that employees could use different devices based on their preference, this seems to be a major bottleneck. Simply office currently supports all android devices from 2.2 onwards.
- Hp Anywhere – HP has launched hp Anywhere product in this space. Anywhere was launched much before Simply Office. However, the major metrics of the product like #of downloads, #of likes, # of people who actively rated the product is much less as compared to Simply Office. We have ourselves not used Hp Anywhere.
YS: What’s the traction that Simply Office has got so far?
Kusum: Simply Office has close to 10,000 downloads in Google play in the last four months with good retention and engagement. Nearly five per cent of the users have recommended the app to their fellow colleagues. Small group interviews and user experience testing has resulted in positive feedback about the product. We plan to support Simply Office on Windows and IOS in the next six months. We are also working to tune the business KPIs of Simply Office to provide the best user experience to our customers.
YS: How do you reach to your potential customers?
Kusum: Simply Office is available in Google play store and customers can directly download their enterprise dashboard through the play store. We are also in talks with OEMs to provide parts of the Simply Office functionality pre-installed in smartphones and tablets.
YS: What are some of your short term targets?
Kusum: We are aiming for 1,000 installations to SMBs through the play store in the next six months. A critical target for us is to secure one large deal with an OEM in the short term. We are also coming up with lot of innovative products in the Simply Office brand in the next few months.
To learn more about Simply Office, click here.