Microsoft Dynamics 365 Blog

Today, nearly eight in 10 workers spend at least some of their time working out of the office, according to Forrester Research. Three of those 10 workers are currently considered to be fully mobile “anytime, anywhere information workers” who use three or more devices, work from multiple locations, and use lots of apps. In Business Apps space we have seen Forbes reporting that “mobile ERP platforms are expected to take center stage in the future, with business processes being conducted on smartphone and tablet devices rather than on personal computers.”

With mobile playing such a critical role it’s no wonder that SAP customers are becoming increasingly frustrated with a licensing model that charges additional fees for mobile apps available as part of SAP’s “Fiori” collection. Much has been written about users’ dissatisfaction with SAP’s complex licensing model as well as their already exorbitant maintenance costs. Driving annual ERP spend even higher to meet employees’ demands for mobile access only adds to the pain!

At Microsoft Dynamics, we’ve responded not only to user’s demands for friendly, easy-to-use apps that work across a range of devices, but also to the enterprise imperative to control IT spend and not make mobility an inordinate cost of doing business.

We recently unveiled a suite of companion mobile apps for AX, including apps that deliver BI to executives on the go; retail apps that empower sales associates to engage with consumers on the show floor; and tools that enable employees to capture and reconcile expenses while traveling, capture time on projects, and approve business requests from many devices*, anywhere & anytime.

As Kees Hertogh details in his post on Executive Insight, Microsoft Dynamics continues to invest in targeted experiences across different mobile devices for both CRM and AX, but unlike other vendors we will not stop there! We’re empowering our customers to innovate even further by continuing to invest in the tools to enable our customers and partners to quickly develop new apps for their specific business needs quickly and easily!

How quickly you may ask? Well Microsoft Industry Architect Alex Anikiev recently demonstrated the possibilities of the framework, spending just 15 hours to deliver a functional custom application that combines data from AX, CRM, and Bing Maps with functionality from Skype to create an app that allows delivery drivers to schedule and plan routes, contact recipients, capture signatures and photos of damaged goods, and much more. In a recent opinion piece, IDC analyst Christine Dover details Alex’s exploits, and provides examples of ways customers including Delta Airlines and New Belgium Brewing are using AX to deliver “build your own app” innovations.

And the best part? The companion apps—and the APIs and SDKs that allow customers to build their own—are available to existing customers under the Dynamics Business Ready Enhancement Plan at no additional cost. 

We are excited about the new opportunities that mobile bring us and are looking forward to continuing to deliver amazing apps out of the box and to enable customers and partners to deliver their own exciting apps that will empower their users.

*Windows 8, Windows 8 RT and Windows Phone, and iOS and Android for select apps.

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