Last month Gartner published a study looking at 13 vendors’ mobile device management features. The results show that Zenprise, Mobile Active Defense and MobileIron scored highest overall in various use cases, and Good Technology was still the best single email-centric solution for secure enterprise mobile email.

Gartner looked initially at more than 60 vendors in this space, and examined different client-side and server-based solutions for both on-premises and cloud delivery models. The authors stated, “While most mature products (such as those from Good Technology, Sybase and MobileIron) are on-premises, a growing range of cloud services offerings (such as those from AirWatch, Fiberlink and Tangoe) are starting to appeal to users because they are more economical.”

The report was written by Monica Basso and Phillip Redman and has three major recommendations:

  • Choose vendors that support a lightweight management approach, with mobile agents and server-side platforms, when your security and management requirements are limited and deep control is not accepted by employees using personal devices. Examples include Zenprise, MobileIron, BoxTone, Fiberlink and AirWatch.
  • Choose vendors that support a heavyweight approach to deliver secure and manageable corporate email to consumer and personal devices when strict security and compliance requirements apply. Containers can enforce stronger separation among personal and corporate content. Examples include Good Technology, Excitor and Sybase.
  • Users of iOS need to reset their devices for encryption — the data protection mechanism in iOS 4 implements total device encryption, and can be triggered by setting a password to connect to Exchange Active Sync for email, calendar and contacts — and then resynch the data.