Longtime mobile analyst Jack Gold predicts in this CITEWorld piece that Android tablets will overtake iPads as the most deployed slates in the enterprise within the next two to three years. Citing his firm’s survey of 270 North American companies that indicated the number of corporate-issued tablets in the enterprise will outpace BYOD slates by more than two to one over the next three years, Gold said both Android and Windows are well positioned to make big gains in the market, with Android growing “faster and bigger” at Apple’s expense.
Gold is absolutely right that growth in enterprise-issued tablets will benefit Microsoft because those businesses are already customers of the traditional vendors who sell Windows-based slates. But I’m unconvinced that Google has addressed security concerns within Android to the point where big corporations feel safe buying and deploying standard, off-the-shelf devices running the platform.
The wild card here, however, is a player like Samsung, which is developing its own line of corporate-grade Android devices and services focused on security and messaging. If Samsung can convince businesses that its Knox portfolio offers sufficient security — a proposition that shouldn’t be too difficult given the Pentagon’s recent approval – the Korean company could tap the market of enterprise tablets in a very big way.