updated 12:45 pm EDT, Sat April 9, 2011
Android gets Find My iPhone-like enterprise tools
Google late this week took a cue from Apple to bolster Android in the workplace. A combination of a new version of the Google Apps Device Policy app (Market) and a new My Devices page lets workers control a lost or stolen phone similar to Find My iPhone. They can track the device's location, reset the PIN code, ring it to help others find it, or lock it entirely.
Other improvements to Android in the enterprise came at the same time. A new policy lets administrators require that any Android 3.0 tablet on the network use encrypted data. It should now be easier to find corporate users on a Google Apps account as well, with a new Google Apps Lookup app (Market) letting users search by text or voice for fellow employees, not just a phone's individual contacts.
The gestures help close a gap with Apple in the enterprise and help create a potential lure for BlackBerry users. Android has been making some inroads into the workplace, but its security measures and overall corporate support have typically lagged behind. Android 2.2 was usually credited as the first to be suitable enough to use at work and is necessary just to use the new Device Policy app.