Apple Watch Gets Email, IT Support - InformationWeek

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Mobile // Mobile Devices
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6/29/2015
11:18 AM
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Apple Watch Gets Email, IT Support

Good Technology ported its enterprise email application to the Apple Watch so mobile professionals can manage their inboxes and IT can manage Apple's fledgling wearable.

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Good Technology today announced the availability of Good Work for the Apple Watch. Good Work lets mobile professionals manage their inboxes while allowing IT to manage Apple's fledgling wearable.

Good Work is already available to the Apple iPhone, and the Watch version builds on that platform. In addition to basic email and calendar notifications, Good Work for Apple Watch adds capabilities such as glances for new and unread emails, and more detail about upcoming calendar appointments.

According to Good, Apple Watch owners can read emails directly on their watches, and delete, flag, or mark read/unread using the Watch's Force Touch gesture. Force Touch registers the amount of pressure applied to the screen, in addition to basic touch interactions. The calendar app now presents a scrollable timeline. Each appointment can be expanded to reveal information such as the organizer's photo, notes, and other details.

These improved user-facing features are joined by new security controls for IT. Good said in a statement that it updated the policy controls in the Good Dynamic Secure Mobility Platform, which lets businesses manage wearables used in the enterprise. IT can enable or disable the Good Work watch app from Good's Web-based console. Moreover, Good Work supports the new Apple Watch wrist-detection restriction, so companies that have stricter mobile device management policies can enforce those policies with ease.


(Image: Mutlu Kurtbas/iStockphoto)

(Image: Mutlu Kurtbas/iStockphoto)

"Enabling enterprise mobility means securing data accessed and used on all devices, whether smartphones, tablets, or wearables,” said Christy Wyatt, chairman and CEO of Good Technology, in a June 29 statement. "The Good Work app for Apple Watch [allows] greater productivity for employees while also providing complete policy controls for IT." (Wyatt was formerly an executive at Motorola.)

The proliferation of wearables in the enterprise is beginning to ramp up. Though the majority of wearables sold today are fitness bands, smartwatches are predicted to surpass fitness bands as early as 2017. Android Wear and Pebble have a solid share of the smartwatch market, though Apple may be quick to catch up.

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Reports suggest Apple has already moved 2.8 million smartwatches since the Watch's April 24 debut. Some analysts believe Apple may ship as many as 15 million devices before the end of the year. Every one of those Watches will be paired with an iPhone -- today's most prevalent enterprise smartphone.

IT will need to be on the lookout for the rising tide of wearables in the workplace -- especially those from Apple and Google. In addition to email and calendar data, the Watch holds enterprise contact information.

Good Work for Apple Watch is available from the iTunes App Store. If you're not employing Good's platform in your business, it's a safe bet that Good's competitors will add wearable controls to their own MDM platforms in the months ahead.

Eric is a freelance writer for InformationWeek specializing in mobile technologies. View Full Bio

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shamika
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shamika,
User Rank: Ninja
6/29/2015 | 11:47:36 AM
Sony
This is interesting. Accordingly to my understanding "Sony" was the first to introduce this technology.  Do you think I am correct on this?
progman2000
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progman2000,
User Rank: Ninja
6/29/2015 | 12:15:19 PM
Wow, still don't get it
Granted, I am a notorious late adopter, but I still don't get the smart watch thing. I am a long time lover of automatic watches and I think I would sooner hack my arm off than strap an Apple watch to my wrist...
vnewman2
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vnewman2,
User Rank: Ninja
6/29/2015 | 1:24:33 PM
Re: Wow, still don't get it
@progman2000 - I'm with you on this.  Still don't get it.  To me, watches are supposed to be wearable pieces of art - not wearable computers.

But on a side note, I wouldn't hold out much hope for Good Technologies to improve upon anything the Apple Watch has to offer.  We just got rid of our Good server and I was glad to see it go.  It was nothing but a headache.  The last experience I had with it was it stopped delivering a user's email on her Andriod because it had reached a storage limit.  Even when mail was deleted and more room was made available, it would not resolve.  We just moved that user to Active Sync instead.
progman2000
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progman2000,
User Rank: Ninja
6/29/2015 | 2:40:06 PM
Re: Wow, still don't get it
I have to say, I'm a runner and as a techie I own the latest Garmin GPS watch which has bluetooth and syncs with your phone. I am forced to run with my phone quite often because I am on call. It is kind of cool to have the watch show you text messages, emails, and display caller id when you're running. But it's never something I would wear during the normal course of the day. I love automatic watches too much. Plus my cell phone is always a pocket away.
danielcawrey
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danielcawrey,
User Rank: Ninja
6/29/2015 | 3:52:15 PM
Re: Sony
This is great as long as you are willing to squint at your wrist for long periods of time in order to go through you email on a smartwatch. 

I really don't see myself reading email on a smartwatch; reading messages on a smartphone is already bad enough if you ask me. 
asksqn
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asksqn,
User Rank: Ninja
6/29/2015 | 5:52:58 PM
No Gee Whiz Factor Here
Not being a die-hard Dick Tracy fan, I don't see the appeal of going blind trying to read email on yet another vastly overpriced I-product when I can just as easily and lot more comfortably view it on a phone and/or tablet and/or laptop. 
Thomas Claburn
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Thomas Claburn,
User Rank: Author
6/29/2015 | 6:56:10 PM
Re: Wow, still don't get it
>We just got rid of our Good server and I was glad to see it go.  It was nothing but a headache. 

When you call your company Good Technology, you'd better make sure the product delivers what the name suggests.
vnewman2
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50%
vnewman2,
User Rank: Ninja
6/29/2015 | 6:59:15 PM
Re: Wow, still don't get it
@Thomas - True. You open yourself up for plenty of jokes - like the one we used at my firm "Good for nothing" Technology
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
6/29/2015 | 11:14:07 PM
Re: No Gee Whiz Factor Here
IMHO, Dick Tracy's watch was WAY cooler.  There were no little buttons or apps or connections to your phone or your FitBit.  It was instant, latency-free, two-way videoconferencing on your wrist.  That's it.
Joe Stanganelli
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Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Author
6/29/2015 | 11:15:16 PM
Re: Sony
@daniel: I was just thinking that Apple investors should also probably put their money in eyeglass manufacturers as well!
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