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Monday, September 14, 2009

Mobile Applications Moving into the Cloud

Mobile cloud computing subscribers worldwide will grow rapidly over the next five years, rising from 42.8 million subscribers in 2008 to just over 998 million in 2014, according to the latest market study by ABI Research.

Mobile cloud applications move the computing power and data storage away from mobile devices and into the cloud (managed cloud services), bringing apps and mobile computing to not just smartphone users but a much broader range of mobile subscribers.

According to ABI senior analyst Mark Beccue, "From 2008 through 2010, subscriber numbers will be driven by location-enabled services, particularly navigation and map applications. A total of 60 percent of the mobile Cloud application subscribers worldwide will use an application enabled by location during these years."

Some innovative applications are already commercially available. Lock manufacturer Schlage, or example, has launched LiNK -- a keyless lock system for the home that enables subscribers to remotely control not only the door lock, but heating/cooling, security cameras and light monitors, all via a PC or mobile device.

Business productivity applications will soon dominate the mix of mobile cloud applications, particularly collaborative document sharing, scheduling, and sales force management applications.

ABI expects some or all of the most recognized Platform as a Service (PaaS) platforms -- Google, Amazon AWS, and Force.com -- to market their mobile capabilities aggressively starting in 2010.

Beccue concludes by reiterating his finding that, "By 2014, mobile cloud computing will become the leading mobile application development and deployment strategy, displacing today's native and downloadable mobile applications."