Our bet is that Google Apps will be tightly integrated into the Nexus One enterprise phone. Google syncs every Android phone to a Google account. The next step seems logical. Sync Google Apps with the Android.
With Google Apps integrated, a customer could assign employees a Nexus One smartphone that is tied centrally to the account. As described on Ars Technica, each device could have its own Google Voice number. The smartphones could be then distributed to employees. Billing would be centralized and the employees would have a managed suite of applications for email, messaging, calendering, contacts and more.
In the end, Google may be the winner simply also by offering features that are as available on the Nexus One as on a Blackberry device. A core Google strategy is to develop features that cut across the consumer and enterprise. That's apparent in a feature announced today that allows Blackberry users to search email and contacts with a new Google application. You can perform the same function on a Nexus One.
But he Nexus One has a long way to go before it can really compete with the Blackberry or the iPhone.
With that in mind, here are some security features that would make the Nexus One more compelling for the enterprise.
Without hardware encryption, the Nexus One will never meet enterprise security standards. The iPhone and the Blackberry both have this necessary feature.
Remote Data Removal
A lost smartphone is a vulnerable smartphone. The Android does not support the capability to erase data remotely. Like encryption, this is a must have feature for the enterprise.
The Blackberry has the ability for corporate IT to lock down a device. This relates to remote data wiping. The Android needs this corporate security capability for it to be enterprise ready.
The iPhone requires application signing. The certificate can be pulled at any time by Apple. This helps protect against rogue applications. Android devices do not require a trusted authority sign the certificates.
It's Still Early
We know little about what is planned for the Nexus One. But we can't expect it will have huge appeal in the enterprise. It's so new to the market. The OS is still quite nascent in its development. Even with a Google Apps integration, enterprise managers will have to see how the OS and its security features measure up before giving it the green light.