AT&T Toggle

AT&T has announced their latest offering for users looking to bring their own devices to their work environment. AT&T Toggle, as it is called allows your device to contain two worlds essentially -- your work world and your home world all while keeping both worlds safe and secure and making it easy for IT admins to implement:

  • Personal mode: When not working, send text messages to friends, watch TV shows and movies, and play games on your mobile device as you otherwise would. Personal activities remain segregated.
  • Work mode: If it’s time to buckle down and focus on business, employees can enter their work environment. In this mode, users can access corporate email, applications, calendars and more, just as they would on a company-provided device.

The service will allow IT admins to control the corporate side of the device with the capability to update applications, remote wipe and manage company access while the personal side of your device remains unaffected.

The long and short of it, you get to use the device you love to use and businesses save money and know that their data is both compliant to security standards and secure on whatever device it is that you are using. AT&T Toggle can be used on devices running Android 2.2 and higher, and with any service provider. Full press release can be found after the break.

Source: AT&T

Go Ahead - Bring Your Own Device to Work
Safely Access Business Data on Personal Mobile Devices with AT&T Toggle

Switch between work and play with a few quick taps on your smartphone or tablet. Carry one device, loaded with your favorite games and apps as well as your business email, contacts and calendars. And imagine your company not minding one bit.

All this is coming from AT&T*.

AT&T Toggle separates and safeguards business data on employees’ mobile devices, creating a distinct work mode apart from the typical personal mode in a single smartphone or tablet. AT&T is the first U.S. carrier to announce this type of application, with availability expected before the end of 2011.

  • Personal mode: When not working, send text messages to friends, watch TV shows and movies, and play games on your mobile device as you otherwise would. Personal activities remain segregated.
  • Work mode: If it’s time to buckle down and focus on business, employees can enter their work environment. In this mode, users can access corporate email, applications, calendars and more, just as they would on a company-provided device.

“Our research shows that approximately 50 million employees in the U.S. alone could benefit from business mobile applications,” said John Stankey, President and CEO, AT&T Business Solutions. “Mobile applications delivered in a cloud computing environment can transform business operations. AT&T is focused on integrating advanced technologies – like cloud and mobility – to create valuable solutions for our customers.”

Many Connected Devices, Few IT Resources

According to a July 2011 Forrester Research, Inc. report, nearly 60 percent of companies allow employees to use personal devices for work and provide IT support for some or all of these devices.1  

The “bring your own device” trend can benefit businesses in a number of ways, saving on costs associated with company-owned equipment and satisfying employees’ desire for flexibility. At the same time, IT personnel often struggle to maintain control over dozens of different smartphones and tablets, stretching their time and budgets to the limit.

With the number of mobile applications projected to reach 1.3 million by the end of this year – as opposed to only 75,000 applications for personal computers – managing employee-owned devices is not getting any easier.2

“When it comes to connected devices, one size doesn’t fit all,” said Chris Hill, Vice President, Advanced Mobility Solutions, AT&T Business Solutions. “People want to use their own smartphones and tablets for work, but that practice can create major headaches for businesses’ IT departments. AT&T Toggle helps resolve the issue in a simple, affordable manner.”

AT&T Toggle offers a convenient web portal that allows IT administrators to:

  • Manage which employees have access to which company resources.
  • Add, update and delete business applications on employees’ personal devices.
  • Wipe all corporate information stored in work mode if an employee leaves the company or loses his or her device.

Designed to strip away complexity for both businesses and their employees, AT&T Toggle can be used on devices running Android 2.2 and higher, and with any service provider.

AT&T customers have already indicated interest in this type of solution. For one organization that provides company-owned devices to more than 1,000 employees, the CIO is exploring a new policy, which would allow employees to use personal smartphones and tablets to connect to the corporate network. With AT&T Toggle, the IT department could manage work-related functions remotely, controlling mobile and security preferences based on employee location and responsibilities. The CIO can protect business data – his number one priority – while simultaneously saving on the costs of issuing separate devices to employees.

Innovation in Action

AT&T Toggle is the latest addition to AT&T’s portfolio of mobility products and services for businesses, which includes mobile device management solutions. AT&T’s Advanced Mobility Solutions group aims to flexibly deliver content, applications and solutions – like AT&T Toggle – to any device, at any time.

The AT&T Toggle program was cultivated through three innovation initiatives currently underway at AT&T: The Innovation Pipeline (TIP), AT&T’s Fast Pitch program, and The AT&T FoundryTM. Together, these initiatives helped speed an idea to market in just months by dedicating resources to the project and enhancing collaboration between AT&T and third party developers.

This is just the beginning. Starting in 2012, AT&T plans to introduce a series of additional services and features designed to free employees from the constraints of company-owned devices and turn personal handsets into tools for business productivity.

"AT&T's approach to seeking out best-of-breed solutions, certifying key applications in major vertical or horizontal segments, and providing wraparound services such as implementation, integration, and support creates a service portfolio that is highly adaptive across enterprise segments," wrote IDC analysts in an August 2011 report.3

Today, more than 18,000 AT&T business customers have adopted mobile applications – up nearly 400 percent since the end of the first quarter of 2011.

To learn more about how AT&T can transform personal phones into business-ready devices, contact your AT&T account representative.

1 Forrester Research, Inc., Forrsights: Mobility Dominates Enterprise Telecom Trends In 2011, July 22, 2011.

2 IDC, Managing Consumerization of IT: CIO Recommendations for Effective Bring Your Own Device Strategies, May 16, 2011, Doc. #LM51T.

3 IDC, Strategies and Opportunities Driving Mobile Enterprise Application Development Life-Cycle Services, Doc # 229772, August 2011.

*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.

About AT&T

AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) is a premier communications holding company and one of the most honored companies in the world. Its subsidiaries and affiliates – AT&T operating companies – are the providers of AT&T services in the United States and around the world. With a powerful array of network resources that includes the nation’s fastest mobile broadband network, AT&T is a leading provider of wireless, Wi-Fi, high speed Internet, voice and cloud-based services. A leader in mobile broadband and emerging 4G capabilities, AT&T also offers the best wireless coverage worldwide of any U.S. carrier, offering the most wireless phones that work in the most countries. It also offers advanced TV services under the AT&T U-verse® and AT&T | DIRECTV brands. The company’s suite of IP-based business communications services is one of the most advanced in the world. In domestic markets, AT&T Advertising Solutions and AT&T Interactive are known for their leadership in local search and advertising.

Additional information about AT&T Inc. and the products and services provided by AT&T subsidiaries and affiliates is available at http://www.att.com. This AT&T news release and other announcements are available at http://www.att.com/newsroom and as part of an RSS feed at www.att.com/rss. Or follow our news on Twitter at @ATT.

 
There are 23 comments

kotoku says:

And android continues to make corporate in roads, apple does not, and RIM continues to wither. Hmm.

abtxpress says:

This may be useful to some, but I already use my personal phone for work and personal at the same time. I have no need to go back and forth between work and personal. I get my exchange mail, gmail, Facebook, Google +, Docs, excel and what not all at the same time. I refused a company phone because of their policies. And I wont carry 2 phones.

Gekko says:

exactly. that's the beauty of MS Exchange EAS + Gmail. let me bring my own hardware and plug in. stop the paranoid control - it's not necessary. and stay out of my business and my life and my way.

MS EAS offers full control of your device - it is largely up to the Exchange admin/IT staff to determine what level of control they offer. As an admin, this would be nice if the control truly extends ONLY to the work side. Just my two cents

ScottColbert says:

Hey bozo, newsflash, unless you're self employed , on company time it's not your business your life or your way. I'd fire anyone in a heartbeat with that kind of idiotic behavior.

PeterPhan says:

Right as Verizon announces their Unified Communication Client:

http://m.androidcentral.com/verizon-wireless-launches-mobile-unified-com...

Timing is everything

Lloyd_S says:

Hey, Nokia did this years ago! And T-Mobile even had a phone touting this. Nokia called it Modes and the T-Mobile phone was called the Nokia Mode (E73 if I recall correctly). This doesn't sound too original for AT&T or Android!

Evan says:

I don't see how being first or original is relevant in this case.

It's a capability that is not widely available today, so this provides an additional option for certain situations.

3rdpig says:

There would be no way in hell I'd turn my phone over to the IT department or give them access to it in any way. I'll leave it in the car, they can provide me with a company phone that they can have all the control over they want. Take it from an IT guy, you don't want them to have control over your device.

ratsttam says:

That is the point of the "toggle". Your personal data is separate from the corporate data. RIM has a feature similar in the new 7 series OS. The IT department can wipe THEIR side of things, and never touch your data. It's closer in line to actually having multiple phones, in one box.

Not all companies are willing to give all their employees dedicated phones (or if they do, they are simple feature phones). This will give you the ability to have a much more advanced phone than what your company would be willing to spring for.

Logical_guy says:

Is this a market download or is this simply something provided to IT departments to hamper your phone? If it is a market download, where is it?

Who? says:

Sweet! I have to login every time I want to view my work email! Amazing!

Gekko says:

i don't like this one bit and i'll be damned if i turn over my phone to some donut-eating slovenly IT guy. IT people care about two things - free food and job security - and i perform best when they do what i say and get out of my way.

davidr521 says:

Wow.

If it weren't for those "donut-eating slovenly" IT guys, you wouldn't have email in the first place. Users like you make "user" a 4-letter word.

I care about two things: taking care of users, and taking care of my family.

Glad I don't work where you do...

Gekko says:

nah - we'll just outsource it all to Google Apps. or India. it's already happened/happening at many Fortune 500 companies as we speak.

Tonio21 says:

Wow, well then don't turn your phone over if it's that serious and just carry two. The IT techs you work with may only care about what you stated but that doesn't ring true for all of us. I bet if you have to do over the phone support with the tech's in India it's no fun.

ratsttam says:

We had a person at work that had your same attitude towards the IT department. He was told not to ever touch another company computer again by his manager at the recommendation of IT. He was terminated shortly after for not allowing the IT dept to what they needed to do to fix his computer. To this day, he is used as an example...

"IT people care about two things - free food and job security". Everybody cares about job security, from Doctors, Mechanics, Laborers, retail, and even food service. If you're not worried about job security, you probably don't have a job to be worried about. And who doesn't like free food?? I would say you made a stereo type about working people, not just your IT department.

Lee_R3D says:

First thing this reminds me of is Scenes on HTC Sense, except your employer can monitor and regulate the Work side. Useful if you have work phones, but not if you like your information.

You are all wrong. It has nothing to do with scenes or profiles. The closest thing that can even come close to explaining what it is AT&T is doing is equivalent of dualbooting your PC. And thus having 2 OS's that you can swap between at your own leasure and thus keep things seperated.

From what I can gather this "app" creates a second locked storage in your phone containing all the business information and allows your business IT admin to administer that little part of your phone, and ONLY that little part. So if the IT Admin sends a wipe then its only that little part of your phone that wipes and not the entire phone etc.

Not exactly true segregation of data and what not. But its as close as you can get on a single device really....

Evan says:

My first two thoughts were "dual boot" and "virtual machine".

Those are the two methods I think of for keeping everything segregated. I wonder if they're using some form of one of these or something else entirely.

I also wonder what the practical user experience is. Is it like turning your personal phone off and turning your work phone on? In other words, do work calls go to voicemail if you're in personal mode and vice-versa?

I wonder how long it'll take to switch modes. Dual booting could take a couple minutes to shut down and start back up.

a.d.am says:

Bunch of IT pervs sniffing around on my device. Go outside you pasty freaks and get a life!!!

a.d.am says:

Bunch of IT pervs sniffing around on my device. Go outside you pasty freaks and get a life!!!

MilMascaras says:

I am/was in IT, and I pretty much would use this thing the opposite way of what's being discussed here.

I would put this on company phones !

You see, trying to control how an employee uses an ubiquitous device such as a smartphone is an exercise in futility. (Employees, don't give your personal phone to your employers IT staff...)

The way people work (I am in the creative industry), they are swiveling their heads everytime they hear an email alert, and SMS MMS tones, twitter, chat clients, etc.

Let em, this is just the new "normal"....

You can use various means to review your employees real performance, rather than worrying about them listening to music whilst typing some email responses....

So employers should just give employees company smart phones to keep their employees tethered to the work environment, and let them do some sandboxed personal profile on a phone using Toggle.

(And maybe the employee can save a few bucks by downgrading some services on their personal cell) The employee can rightly use the hell out of the company provided phone, and the employer remains able to immediately contact/locate the employee and control his company specific data access / communications access...