Is Windows Phone finally ready for enterprise?

Years ago, Windows Mobile had many built-in methods that an IT administrator could use to restrict the device when used in a corporate setting. This was a good thing. Then Windows Phone was introduced and almost all of those administrator features were removed. Microsoft stated that Windows Phone would be a consumer device, and not meant for the enterprise. As time passed, it seems that Microsoft realized that they really did need to address the enterprise as the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) movement took off. However up until now, the few restrictions that were added have not satisfied IT administrators.

Recently Microsoft announced Windows Phone 8.1 that provides some Mobile Device Management (MDM) improvements over Windows Phone 8.0. These features are part of what is called the 'enterprise pack'. Windows Phone 8.1 will likely be pushed out near the end of June, but we already know what will be included. Lets take a look at whether Windows Phone is now more acceptable as an enterprise device.

If we refer to the MDM Matrix, we can see that it compares all current mobile operating systems, and their MDM features. Windows Phone 8.0 and 8.1 are shown, as well as Windows RT 8.0 and 8.1.

On the device password front, with the exception of the missing MDM feature of "Grace period before device lock", everything is there, as you would expect for enforcing device passwords. The feature for "Unlock using fingerprint" is missing but that is because right now there are no Windows Phones with fingerprint readers. One strange thing we can see in the matrix is that Windows RT tablets cannot enforce a device password as is confirmed in Microsoft's official (opens in new tab) MDM feature set for InTune, their MDM product. Apparently only once the user has manually set a password, can device passwords be enforced.

MDM features that have been added that were not in Windows Phone 8.0 are good. They include the ability to block device screen captures (great for preventing data leakage), disable GPS, disable the Wi-Fi radio, and/or disable the device's ability to act as a Wi-Fi Hotspot. In addition, you can disable the NFC and Bluetooth radios, both restrictions not found in Windows Phone 8.0.

Windows Phone 8.1 now also allows an administrator to disable the ability to use your phone as a USB mass storage device (a very good way to prevent company data leakage), and they can prevent you from accessing the SD card.

Another good addition that can prevent company data leakage is the ability to disable copy/paste. The ability to disable the official Windows Phone app store allows an administrator to restrict what apps are installed, and the ability to disable the built-in Internet Explorer web browser, allowing IT administrators to force the use of another browser.

Some strange browser restrictions missing from Windows Phone 8.1, but that are included in Windows RT 8.1 are restrictions like blocking scripting, auto fill, and popups.

The ability to prevent corporate documents from opening in non-corporate approved apps is also missing, and if this was present it would go that much further when preventing data leakage.

Some other restrictions that are missing that some IT administrators will want are the ability to restrict the microphone, voice assistant (Cortana), availability to use the voice assistant (Cortana) while the device is locked, powering off the phone or putting it into airplane mode (both of these are useful if the device is stolen and the thief/hacker wants to prevent a remote wipe), and the ability to stop the device from accepting untrusted TLS certificates.

Workplace Windows Phone 8.1

What is not shown in the matrix is an important new feature in Windows Phone 8.1 that allows for corporate VPN usage. Some IT administrators want to doubly ensure that data is protected while in the air, and Windows Phone 8.0's non-support for VPNs was a limiting factor.

Overall I think that Microsoft has added the correct mix of MDM restrictions to satisfy most IT administrators. Compared to out-of-the-box Android, it is definitely ahead, and on a par with iOS. Vendors like Samsung and LG have added more restrictions that make their implementation of Android safe for the enterprise, however this means that companies will need to mandate the purchase of devices made by a specific vendor. This is fine for company purchased devices, but when you want to adopt a Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policy, restricting what devices you employees buy for themselves will not go over very well.

Apple, BlackBerry, and Microsoft build the MDM features into the OS. In the case of Windows Phone, the user can choose to buy devices from multiple vendors, which means that the same level of protection and restrictions would apply no matter what device is purchased.

What do you think? Will your company start allowing Windows Phone 8.1 devices? Is Microsoft's implementation going far enough?

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Craig Johnston
  • Not bad! Great improvement
  • All the restriction allowed make it sound like its ATT ready...
  • LOL
  • other than the lack of enterprise apps, yes, the OS itself as defined by manageability is ready. but you have to be kidding if you think businesses who purchase phones for employees don't look at the fact WP remains severely under represented in the apps department in particular business apps. everywhere you go there is the appstore iOS and play store logo. So while MSFT has made some inroads in big name apps, it is the little known ones that get you because those are the ones that bite you every time. hello PNC bank. -wp user.
  • From what I cen tell from comments online, this seems to be especially true of medical apps. Considering how huge the health care sector is, this might be a problem. Then again, that isn't normally a BYOD issue.
  • Most USA medical UI run through MS Secure serves with IP registrations. Those not on MS Secured run on Assure servers, all of which are HIPPA certified. My husband is a CV Surgeon and can access, through internal apps. or 256 IE access, most any information needed. He is able to access, real time, EKG images through these resource. With iOS, Android, not so much. Really not at all unless iOS converted; BB is still considered secure.
  • sadly no, the TLS support doesn't work with all the wifi networks, my phone isn't able to connect to my University network
  • Yes me too. It can't connect with my University Wifi. Anyone has a solution?
  • Use a portable router with hotspot login
  • Troll of the thread
  • Hahaha.
  • I feel you pain. I have been waiting to connect to my company for the longest time using Wi-Fi and finally got it with 8.1.
  • ^This. It is so frustrating that such a simple task as connecting to a wifi network cannot be accomplished. Particularly because android and iOS do it in a snap of the finger. 
  • Yeah, things like this make me think if Microsoft really puts efforts on WP, I don't want to leave the platform, but its really frustrating when a cheap android phone can connect to an tls network and my 820 don't
  • I talked to a microsoft employee who mentioned that the (stupidly in my opinion) made the more advance wifi protocols only available through MDM. This means that most university networks remain dysfunctional on WP8.1. I hope they smarten up on that in the next update because clearly all the groundwork is there, they just need to make a config page.
  • I would love to roll out WP8 and I plan to later this year once I have got iOS and Android out for our CYOD programme in the next few weeks. MDM support for our chosen vendor is pretty weak when it comes to WP8 but hopefully once they upgrade the software to include the Enterprise Pack it will make a good handset espcially when you can buy WP handsets for £150. I would like MS to and MDM providers work closer together to enable proper managment of Windows Arm and Surface Pro, everyone i have demoed a Surface too has been really impressed and the few that I have let escape into the wild are only using ActiveSync. If I could mange both flavours of Windows via MDM I would open it up to BYOD. I know the Pro can be managed via SCCM but that doesn't work for us as want a light touch managment for folks to bring in their own device and just treat them as a tablet and have a secure container that we manage without placing too many restrictions on the rest of the device.
  • We're still rocking BYOD, but looking into CYOD this year. Unfotunately the packages/software/hardware that works best with what we have and plan for, currently doesn't support (and no plans to) WP. Annoying as ~95% of our desktop and mobile stations are Windows powered, and having Office on a mobile is handy for those away from their offices.
  • that's the trick isn't it? surpace Pro (or any other brand "Pro" tablet) is a unique beast in that it's domain joinable. At that point it's no different than any other PC or laptop - which is how we are handling them. It makes it so much easier from an MDM standpoint because it's not managed via MDM :)   Granted our environment lends itself well to that model because we are very restrictive with BYOD (government office with various compliance issues). There's no way we'd ever let BYOD (which really means "unmanaged") devices join the domin/network the same way as org owned devices (pro or otherwise).
  • We use a shared mailbox - a Office 365 feature - at work. It isn't officially supported on Windows Phone, but it is supported with the Microsoft OWA App on iOS (!). I guess this doesn't need any comment.
  • It needs! If you remain silent, and just complain in forums where no MS employees go to read, how do you expect any kind of improvement in that topic?
  • Who in their right mind would give control of their device to their employer? Keeping work and personal life separate isn't just a gimmick, it's a necessity in today's world.
  • When I did work with CASL, you couldn't even bring the phone into the proper building, there was a storage locker. Some people do work that requires these types of precautions, and it's up to you if you want to work there or not.
  • Agreed. Some places also do background checks and drug tests. There are requirements, but I don't understand why people are actually excited about this. I get the "I don't want to carry two devices all the time", but are they really willing to let the employer read/erase/block their *own* phone?
  • I'm pretty sure these features are needed when it's a company offered phone. Not your own phone.
  • A friend of mine works for a manufacturer (making parts for aircraft mostly) and they're not allowed any device inside the buildings that may have a camera or microphone given the work they produce can be highly confidential.
  • Yes, but how much percentage of planet earths population consist of such highly confidential workers?
  • I've worked for employers that offer their own phones--outdated Blackberry's---or the option to BYOD.   I chose the company Blackberry and kept my personal device, personal. I agree with Roman Royter:  I have no desire to have my employer(s) control the data on my own devices.   I'll make do with carrying two phones.   In my mind, it's a healthy mental seperation between work/life.   The perk:  I also get to leave the company phone at my desk at the end of the day, so my boss can't reach me at home.   Priceless.
  • Me. For the $60 stipend I get to receive every month and get to use WP rather than a corporate iPhone with its tiny screen and keyboard, proprietary plug, and horrible autocorrect/spelling correction system. And carrying two devices sucks.
  • +810... And mdm's are getting good enough now that a corporate wipe of email does not wipe the entire phone... A lot of that depends on the mdm admin being reasonable about things...
  • how exactly and what to wipe: isnt this subject to interpretation of the phone OS vendor? I mean if the crazy-oversensitive IT admin sets to wipe the phone, he has options to choose: full phone / only company emailbox, in the 2nd case leaving the private photo library, MP3s, SMS and the private gmail / account intact?
  • You "give control" so-to-speak for the privilage of connectivity. You employer is responsible for security and data integrity/discovery and so some amount of control is required. In our case employee owned devices are controlled/managed to a lesser extent and everything (their responsibilities and ours) is explicitly stated in a policy that the user signs. Most are comfortable with that - some aren't and choose to opt out.
  • Never once got it to succesfully connect to my network. Even after SonicWall app was released. Fails with generic error.
  • If your error was something like error 2250certificate warningunable to connect to servertoken invalid...something along those lines, then it may be an improperly named certificate on your VPN. SonicWall KB #sw11035 explains it. I renamed the description on my certificate today and it my Icon running 8.1 to connect using SonicWall Mobile Connect!  Good hunting!
  • That's the same problem I had. Fixed same way. Both Icons, 928 & 8X all working now.
  • No Cisco VPN client = Not ready.
  • Lack of Cisco Support (VPN/AnyConnect, Jabber, etc) is my big missing piece too, along with missing OS level printing support and no BT keyboard support.  That's before you even start talking about the apps that are still missing.   Is BT keyboard support important?  Yup - if you have a larger format device like the Lumia 1520.  Along those lines the Cisco support is missing on Windows RT devices as well hampering MS tablet use in IT.
  • I'm more then happy to sell you a Sonicwall ;)
    All kidding aside I agree. I have a client that uses Cisco and it would be really handy to use my surface and not have to wait until I get back to my office to use my desktop.
  • Speaking of SonicWALL - we had problem making WP to work with their Aventail SRA appliances. Initial problem was in a way how WP was advertising phone's IMEI number (it would show in Aventail's log as gibberish, sort of) so if you wanted to use phone's IMEI number as additional security layer, it was no go. Not long ago SonicWALL has informed us that this problem is sorted, and phone did work - kind of. Emails, calendar changes etc. were coming nice to phone, but sending email from phone was resulting in multiple copies of email being sent. Receiver would receive all of them, what seemed like happening was that Aventail was somehow blocking confirmation about successfully sent email from Exchange to phone, resulting phone to keep retrying to send same email, even if it was sent and delivered successfully. I must admit we haven't tried again in the last month or so, maybe that was sorted in the meantime as well.
  • Yes like in 42 months since its launch, they were unable to bring Cisco and Juniper VPN support in OS (both WP and Windows). This is a deal-breaker for large enterprise out there. Its still "Not ready" even for many non-enterprise power-users. Other gripes: Same goes for Bing; beta for last 5 years in many countries, missing many services. And Cortana relies on Bing, so.. oh well! "We are making Bing better", but many people worldwide can't feel the difference. They are not even getting started! Forget about wining the competition. Same goes of XB live gold membership. Not available for all countries. Same goes for MSDN subscription; not available for all countries. Microsoft used to have global reach in Gates' times, currently is a US-first and becoming US-only corporation. This is a bad news. Many shining and loyal MVPs have left Microsoft and joined her competitors in past few years. They are not even serious about employee rentention. Microsoft is losing trust, money, hearts and shares everyday, due to the aforementioned reasons, especially lack of impartiality.
  • No. It should be, but with the crippled VPN support its hardly even a consideration... No standard SSL Support? Why wouldn't they just carry over the Windows Networking Stack? We were planning to deploy WP at 8.1, but not with this poor VPN implementation I'm sorry to say. A shame, because I LOVE WP personally.
  • I wish they would add PPTP/L2TP on top of the SSTP VPN support out the box.
  • I wish that also, but all they keep adding is pp
  • Until this is added, not ready for corporate use in my eyes.
  • Exactly! Can't use it in it's current state. Would love to. Even RT can do this, so MS knows.
  • I could've swore i seen an app for hotspot shield
  • Nope. Not without being able to email files from within the mail app WITHOUT using a damn OneDrive link. I need to be able to attach any file on my phone or SD card to any email from within the mail app. 
  • Agreed. This is a huge oversight.
  • YES!!! Why can't MSFT get this done?
  • "the built-in Windows Explorer web browser". The what web browser?! Do you mean Internet Explorer instead?
  • Minimum level achieved - want more!
  • I can't believe you feel that the mix they have added is good enough to be the correct mix. Users have been reporting issues where Windows Phone doesn't support SD Card encryption since 8.0 was released. This is a major lacking feature that Android devices do support. Given how Bitlocker is used by the phone Microsoft needs to get off of their lazy butts and permit that policy to have a phone encrypt an SD card. Preventing access to an SD blows, especially with a device like the one in the picture. If someone bought a Lumia 1520 16GB from ATT and figured an SD card would make up the difference in capacity, a corporate policy would destroy that phone. Forget downloading maps, loading up a bunch if music, being able to take a bunch of pictures with that nice camera, and installing Apps that users qualify to download for free with that device...its not happening with that policy.
  • Too bad the general public is not properly informed about these drawbacks. The headlines just say: "SDcard support..blabla... corporate exchange activesync... blabla... MDM policies support... blabla" It would be great if all the hidden trapmines become known, so it causes significant (monetary) damage to MS, so they are forced to act on that. But as long as such issues remain known only to a handful of individuals, the situation will never change. Spread the word, wherever you go, on all forums, in all relevant topics. Viva la resistance! :)
  • sadly no, the TLS support doesn't work with all the wifi networks, my phone isn't able to connect to my University network
  • The Junos, nor Cisco Anyconnect actually work.  All these features are great, but useless when they don't work.
  • Neither the Junos Pulse nor the Cisco Anyconnect apps work.  So, as far as I am concerned, Windows Phone still has no VPN.
  • Good article. A company where I am employed, is an MDM/Cloud/Security service provider and they have partnered with some of the leading world vendors in MDM space - Citrix, Airwatch, etc. In past two years or so, one of my duties was MDM implementation and customer consultation and I (speaking from my experience) can unfortunately confirm that the most of our customers based on African continent (South Africa, Namibia, etc.) are choosing either Android or IOS devices as their preferred devices for BYOD. Android, because devices are popular, cheap and support comprehensive set of enterprise MDM policies; IOS because a large number of users have iPhones/iPad. On the other hand, Blackberry is almost dead as a platform and most of our customers are quickly phasing them out and WP doesn’t seem to interest them enough. I can assume that is because WP as an MDM/BYOD platform still doesn’t have many of pretty standard IOS and Android MDM options; e.g, GPS tracking, GEO-fencing, so called “kiosk” mode, App tunnels -SSL -VPN (WM supported this before IOS/Android), etc. As a relatively new WP fan (moved from Android/IOS almost year ago) I truly hope that MS will finally stop to play catch up in MDM space and get at least on par with fierce Android/IOS competition, especially considering that most, if not all enterprises already have other MS products (Exchange, Sharepoint,etc) and (from my experience ) are keen to integrate with WP as long as devices are cheap enough (Lumia 520?) and support everything competition is currently offering. Looking at the MDM matrix from the article, I personally think that WP is still not there as competition had those features while back. Howewer, let’s see what happens when 8.1 is officially out, but I honestly think that someone from MS need to take this MDM/BYOD situation much more serious to prevent situation we now have in smartphone consumer space, where WP is significantly lagging behind IOS/Android competition.
  • That where WE handheld comes in. Unfortunately thats where they put their efforts into
  • Although not strictly part of MDM, Windows Phone 8.1 also brings support for Wi-Fi EAP-TLS which was previously mssing and required for many enterprise organisations. The one thing that MS "forgot" to upgrade was the local encryption strength, it is only AES-128-bit encryption as it was on Windows Phone 8.0. The problem here is the three main corporate competitors, iOS, Blackberry and Samsung Android all support AES-256. I can't believe MS missed upgrade the cipher strength it is a big oversight on a straight tick box comparison
  • Well, most companies I visit as an IT Concultant/Senior Engineer, do not have very strict policies. Exchange device policie options are allready enough. And even those are hardly used. Heck, some companies do not even enforce a password requirement.
  • I see the same thing.
  • Until Windows Phone 8.1, and Windows 8 for that matter, supports real world VPN (e.g., Cisco IPSec), I don't see it being widely accepted in the Enterprise.
  • As far as I'm concerned, it doesn't even support VPN. The implementation is so poor that few will actually be able to use it. This oversight is inexcusable after hearing this feature request now for several years...
  • Worked like the bees knees for me.  Brought up RRAS, generated a certificate, and bam I can VPN into my home network. 'course I'm not exactly an 'enterprise'..
  • 'course I'm not exactly an 'enterprise'.. So what did you want to actually say with this comment? Enterprise remote access does not fall into the same category as you tinkering some kind of access to your SOHO router.
  • Good Article Craig :)
  • It's good but maybe to late. I think Microsoft droped the ball when they went consumer focused. Now most companies has already looked them self in a Apple or Android infrastructure. Why would they invest in this when they are happy with what they got? I work for a muti national company and they choose Apple, bought into some MDM tools, created policies for the employees and bought thousends of iPhones. I have an hard time to see that they would invest in a new technology becouse any employee wants an other phone.
  • Since the Universe exploded 4Billion years ago, mayyybeee we should stop looking into the causes, afterall, I mean it is too late, the pattern (expansion) is already set, isn't it?!
  • Any chance of using onedrive to upload the spreadsheet?.. As the download button does not work and some of us don't have google accounts...
  • I would always prefer to budget and for the company to provide a reasonable, secured and functional handset than to go down BOYD. Once you start mixing private and corporate property you blur the lines of control and responsibility.
  • I don't even want to get started about my company and I not interested in restricting my phone's features in any way. Let them provide me with a device and I'll use it for business. What's personal should always remain personal. I don't want any IT administrator poking their nose into my personal data...
  • I love my 920, and with 8.1 it got even better. :) I am one of three in a company with over 300 employees with a Windows Phone. All though I speak positive of my phone and WP in general. I know most will not accept things that are lacking like I do. Apps are one thing, not something that is that important to me personally. But I know it is for many.. Biggest deal breaker up until now for me was lack if VPN. But my excitement turned quickly to a let down when I saw Cisco's Anyconnect app was no where to be found. I know Microsoft has finally done their part with the API. But they should try to push Cisco harder on this. They after all offer one of the most widespread VPN solutions. Fix the latter and I know a few colleagues with droids ready to be migrated. :D Same story on my RT tablet. Love the device, unfortunately I can't do 'real' work on it.
  • This will happen soon like it did for WebEx. The WebEx app on WP 8.1 runs pretty good. It just required 2/3 updates to get it to the same stability as Android and IOS. It's pretty light on battery too.
    BTW you could manually setup VPN for cisco IPSEC without using the anyconnect app. Let me try this out and get back.
  • If you have suggestion on setup manually I would be grateful. I have tried to setup manually but I have not been able to connect to our VPN yet. I have tried the same on my VivoTab RT tablet with no luck.
  • No for me... since: 1) Attach document to email 2) Instant sync back modifications for Microsoft Exchange 3) Multiple account support for onenote 4) I don't know why, but my company wifi doesn't connect (even after 8.1), and sharepoint of my company doesn't work either (we are not running office 365 since regulations prevent us from using a cloud solution) 5) Our vpn vendor doesn't support windows phone at all  
  • MDM != Enterprise  When will people stop making this lazy assumption? There's a lot more to being an appealing device to enterprise customers than MDM. Frankly, the vast majority of corporate IT departments DO NOT force MDM at all. Where WP needs to fill the gap is on supporting non-EAS/365 based collaboration services. WebDAV/CalDAV/CardDAV and LDAP are all critical standards that many enterprises use and WP simply doesn't work in those environments. WPs messaging hub doesn't seem to work with XMPP chat clients either, these are very common for businesses that haven't adopted Skype or Lync as a messaging platform.   Adding VPN is a nice upgrade on this front, but really WP has a long ways to go to be a servicable BYOD option. 
  • I will say this the enterprise solution of choice for my company is mobile iron and today I had to install a company app and it was seamless.
  • All those restrictions make it look more like a dumb phone. Plus, how can it be enterprise ready if it can't even access local network shares?
  • Still can't connect to EAP-TTLS. VPN is incredibly limited with only one protocol supported
  • I love my WP, don't get me wrong. But how can you say that it's ready for enterprise when you can't set a static WLAN ip address and dns servers?
    MSFT, come on...
  • Because MS -world leading and one of the largest software provider- produces the same phone and mobile OS to the Windows ITPRO person and to the grandma. Obviously there are more grandmas than ITPROs on the planet, so the requirements for the grandmas will be prioritized over ITPRO feature requests. It simple as this.
  • You answered the question. WP is not ready for the enterprise segment and actually that is what i pointed out in my comment.
  • WP8.1 doesn't even have a native SIP client!
  • Sorry but if anyone plans to adopt a byod policy they're in for a world of shit. It's a fact that there is no roi on that, byod is ultimately a cost for the company and offers no long term strategic advantages. CYOD or choose your own device is the way to go, better security amongst other advantages and most service providers already have cross platform offerings while Microsoft lags way behind in terms of having an integrated solution. They really need to work much faster but not sure if satya will have the time.
  • While all of this is a positive step forward some small quality of life additions to windows phone such as the shared office 365 inbox enjoyed by the ios office app would help windows phone in the field of business as much as any other.
  • Being at work and wanting to use Wifi with a certificate was a pain in the ass with WP8. WP8.1 fixes that issues for a more secure experience as it automatically uses the certificate. The only worry I'd have is as the kernels get closer for Windows and WP, I assume the vulnerabilities in Windows will exist in WP making firms double open for malicious attacks. ie relatively recent IE vulnerability.
  • I would love to use my WP for enterprise but their is no support for apps like mobile pass, Any connect, workday, and a few others that are required by my business. The lack of support by major companies like Cisco are still an issue.
  • I dint care what you say, android is still not ready for enterprise at all. Windows phone has been ready, if you don't trust employees with corporate data, don't let them use their own mobile device for work. It is too easy to sideload an app in android and bypass IT policies. I have been a member of XDA since before android was a thought and the second it became live there have been droves of tweaked stock apps to trick the OS and some cooks made custom roms and apps specifically designed for email to bypass corporate MDM and IT policies or trick them to think they are being mandated. There was an ' official' mail app that had security removed but MDM be damned to know if it was. Good luck protecting trade secrets with android around your office if you have employees you don't trust.
  • Hopefully the new internal goals and the very well-chosen CEO (IMHO) can push for more WP Enterprise efforts. Long-time Cisco person.  
  • If its not yet, it had better be soon. Enterprise has always been Microsofts bread and butter and if they fail to gain acceptance soon they're going to miss out on a considerable chunk of potential market share that traditionally should be theirs for the taking.
  • All users are satisfied with windows but when all users will be satisfied with windows phone than it will called a windows phone...
  • I remember my first smart phone was Palm Treo with Windows mobile provided by the company.  Back then, rarely do I see others with smart phones, until Apple started rolling out iPhones.  I think that's when MS realized that non enterprise were willing to buy smartphones.  It's ironic that currently, Apple wants to go enterprise but has no infrastructure like MS.
  • Still not able to connect my Comany wifi :(....tired of waiting for the features.
  • So, basically, you're talking about disabling pretty much all the features that make the device half-way useful.  Yep, that's the kind of corporate device I want to try to get the job done.  Oh, wait, I already work for the government, and that's exactly what they do.  IT in the military is laughably skewed toward the useless side.  Which is why I regularly have to use my own device on the commercial side to get real work done.  Brilliant.
  • My company's ActiveSync settings for e-mail still ask the device if SD card encryption is supported. The answer is still no so still no e-mail.
  • if microsoft would announce an improved version for office on wp, it would be even better for enterprise usage!
  • One key functionnality is missing to be ready for enterprises: you cannot invite to a meeting people that are not in your adress book. This is completely absurd, why the hell could you not just put an email adress for people you want to invite ? With Windows Phone, even 8.1, you must have them in your contact list and it's not possible any other way.
  • can't even VPN to my office as it doesn't support RSA authentication!
  • Still waiting for the final version WP 8.1, from 1520
  • We need a way to set Static IP/Gateway/DNS
  • I think from the comments it is obvious, this article was a paid promotion, reality couldnt be further than what was hallucinated in the article.
  • No, not a paid promotion.  I don't do those and neither does MN.  While there still might be challenges making WP8.1 work in the enterprise, the point is that it is much, much better than it was in WP8.0x.  Microsoft is trying to address the issue.  I think they have to otherwise how to they fight against iOS and Android, not to mention I'm sure that they want to muscle BlackBerry out of the enterprise too. I'm gladd there is so much great discussion around thsi topic.
  • Unless they expand vpn types to other than ikev2 only, no
  • Home Depot and my current comanyhave  used Windows phone 6.5 untill last year. Home depot and lots of other companies still use WP6.5 dispite the 10 year gap. I would love to have been able to use WP8 and 8.1 for the job. I still use a mapping device that is now 10 years old running WP6.5 every now and then. I dont think the New WP OS is ready for enteprise use and Microsoft has not done too much to sell the idea. last time I was in a Microsoft store a few months ago they were using a Lumia 900 running WP7. Microsoft has not done too much to make a point to be able to use their latest products in their stores.
  • WM 6.5 is "exactly" 5 years old (it was released on May 2009), so you exaggerate a little bit. (proof: )
  • The devices were made in 2005 eventually being updated to WP6.5
  • That must have been hell of a proper vendor support after purchase, kudos to them! Look at today, not-even-2yrs-old phones are sent to the dump, as the vendor refuses to issue new sw updates in order to force you buy a new one. And the circle of madness continues with the new devices puchased over and over and over again.
  • While many companies use lots of MSFT software - Office, Exchange, Sharepoint, etc. not many are on board with WP for a variety of reasons. I work in a large global company that uses plenty of MSFT s/w, but WPs are not part of the landscape. I don't think we're unique in this regard.  Is it likely to change?  I have no idea.  
  • This is also the market where Microsoft could excel on especially Blackberry is losing its power. But again Microsoft is a little slow on this. They have a great chance to capture enterprise segment because as of now there's no way Android could get close to it.
  • Awesome article, some are above head but still last 2 para are fully understandable, really nice article.