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Good wants to manage your smartphones for $3 a month, per user

Good wants to manage your smartphones for $3 a month, per user

The company's new Mangement Suite also includes a secure browser and an enterprise app store

Good Technology is hoping its cloud-based Management Suite for mobile devices will make life easier for IT departments that don't want to rely on products from multiple vendors to manage the seemingly countless phones and tablets that employees are using for work these days.

The market for mobile software is maturing and becoming more competitive, as vendors offer more functionality for less money. Good is best known for the company's app containerization technology -- software that separates an app from other apps and the OS to improve security -- but has been expanding its offerings to include mobile- device and application management.

"It's a natural step since Good wants to be a more complete supplier," said Leif-Olof Wallin, research vice president at Gartner.

The new Management Suite is based on functionality developed in-house and on technology from BoxTone, which Good acquired last year. Features include policy and configuration management, including the ability to wipe data and detect smartphones that have been jail broken.

Like so many other tools, mobile management software is increasingly becoming cloud-based. Good has found that many of its customers prefer cloud-based products due to the ease of deployment and simplicity of setup.

Wallin agreed: "Most of the organizations I talk to can't stand having to do 12 to 15 server updates per year. They prefer cloud-based solutions where that becomes the vendor's problem," he said.

However, Good offers the option to install the suite on-site. It's also possible to switch between an on-site installation and a cloud implementation over time.

The Management Suite also includes a secure browser and an enterprise app store. It works for devices based on Apple iOS, Android and Samsung Knox, which adds features on top of Android to improve the OS's security. Good plans to offer support for additional operating systems throughout the year.

The competition in the enterprise mobility sector has become tougher as a result of vendors looking to expand their offerings. Good's main competitors are VMware-owned AirWatch and MobileIron, according to Wallin. Unlike Good, they have both been expanding their tools to include the ability to manage desktops and laptops in addition to smartphones and tablets.

But the $3 per user, per month price tag could help convince organizations to go with Good.

"It's a good price point that's cheaper than alternative products ... But that's, in part, based on that you get less functionality," Wallin said.

In addition to the Management Suite, Good also offers an Enterprise Suite, a Collaboration Suite and a Mobility Suite, which offer more extensive functionality and cost between $5 and $15 per user and month.

Send news tips and comments to mikael_ricknas@idg.com

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Tags consumer electronicssmartphoneshardware systemsGood Technologytabletssoftwaresystem management

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