Windows Phone 7.5 in corporate use – First impressions and device setup

This is a story from my work environment. I’m not going to mention the company, but it’s no big secret if you know me. This post is about choosing a smart device for corporate use and being… well smart about it.

First of all, I manage the mobile devices in our mid-sized organization. It’s my job to make sure the tools work and that our outsourced IT Support and our employees get along with each other. Not a small task on most days.

So we recently started ordering Lumia 800’s instead of E7s, since their manufacture ends this summer. With the Nokia E7s, setup for a new one was always a huge issue. I bet most of you guys can imagine the challenges of any modern office and smart devices. The others want the latest and greatest of devices (since some other guy at some other company has ’em too), and others can barely manage an e-mail account.

So far WP7 has been a very welcome addition to the tools at our disposal. Getting an E7 to company specs included but not limited to: requesting the device management client from support, them sending a link to follow, downloading the client, installing the DM client, downloading the DM settings, installing a security client, setting the e-mail information. All this and you can guess how many end users were able to do all this by themselves, even with the 10 page manual with big-ass pictures. Like 5%, that’s who.

And that’s just ridiculous. Granted, some of it was because of the 3rd party DM solution, but the company providing this is *the* company providing these services in Finland. And when you think about it, the E7 was the most corporate phone out there. It was praised for suiting the business users and corp environments and getting it up and running was such a hassle. Well lucky for these guys they hired an MSP to manage their mobile tools and don’t you know it the choice for a new device landed on Lumia 800. 900 was also an option, but the differences between the two are so marginal and the save in budget with a 100-strong office is considerable.

Symbian Device hanging at the office

The loyal but obsolete companion of many business-faces.

Our first worries were on Device Management, the company providing our support weren’t too keen on really selling us the new solutions since all we heard were issues and complications and diminished capabilities. Looking into the possibilities of the Exchange ActiveSync, it turns out what we couldn’t get compared to the old solution is not being able to back up text messages remotely. And a lot of new features. All we heard was: “But you can’t use [name of DM client] anymore…” Are you freaking kidding me?

The new challenger

Okay, so we get our first WP7-device for a first setup. You know what we needed to do. Add the e-mail-info to the accounts and Boom, done. The rest is up to the user, setting a Microsoft ID, creating a Nokia account etc. Ridiculously easy.

We’re going to cover some other corporate features later on, including Lync, Sharepoint, Team Site, Office and stuff like that and see how the “regular” users manage them.

About the Author

JesseSanttilaJesse Santtila (@JesseSanttila)
Jesse is an IT student at Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences. He loves technology, gadgets, design, punk rock and video games. He has been lately very excited about the upcoming Finnish startup-scene and brilliant ideas people come up with.

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About arcticmsp

The Finnish Microsoft Student Partners are a group of enthusiastic students, who are interested in technology and all things new, techy and cool!
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