Pick Your Own Device came before BYOD in enterprise mobility

Corporate and Individual chosen smartphonesRecently this article ran in Wired: COPE: The Secure Alternative to BYOD

The article stopped me, because Corporate-Owned/Personally-Liable policy seemed like it already happened as a form of enterprise mobility strategy. To double-check, I found that in one of our first Mobile Workforce reports in 2010, we asked that question. 56% of mobile workers had a company-provided phone and only 11% chose their own device which the company then supported. And, I had written about this in 2010 in defining “liability” – corporate vs. individual.

In asking around iPass, I got confirmation: Yes, this existed before BYOD but really BYOD is driving this.

Organizations that are fearful of BYOD are using this (still?) as an alternative. Also, you see this in organizations with a BYOD policy, but Corporate-Owned or Corporate-Liable is used for senior people where there is a heightened concern over data security. Or it’s offered to mobile employees as more of a perk- you pick the device but we’ll pay for it. One manager noted that this also happened with Macs five or so years ago. It has now moved to iPads, iPhones and other tablets and smartphones.

Enterprises have to choose where they are on the continuum of enterprise mobility liability and control. This will change for each device and each level of employee. But this has been an active continuum for nearly as long as we’ve had mobile devices.

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