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10 tips to turn Android into a business phone

Give your Android handset the power of a BlackBerry

Android still has some work to do to match the control and power of BlackBerry, but it's not as much work as you may think. Here are 10 tips for turning the Android into a rock-solid business-class phone.

6. Determine the earliest version you'll support

"Even with third-party security tools in place, one of the biggest challenges administrators face when managing Android is that they can't have sweeping policies that cover each and every OS version," Kane says. The same is true for iPhone. The way around this is to set a baseline that your organisation will not go below. For Android, 2.2 should be the cut-off, while iPhones below iOS 4 should be stuck outside the corporate gate.

7. Integrate and secure email

The resident email client on Android is, of course, Gmail, and plenty of people simply configure Gmail to pull in their enterprise accounts. That's fine if you simply want email access on the go, but for integration with Microsoft Exchange, it's lacking. TouchDown serves as a mobile client for Exchange, giving users secure access to their corporate email, calendar, contacts, tasks and notes. One of the big security holes in Android is that it lacks a fully encrypted file system - for now. TouchDown accepts all the major security policies enforced by Exchange Server, such as SD card encryption, PIN and password enforcement and password refresh. TouchDown also partitions itself, so no other applications are allowed to interact with Exchange data.

8. Plug the PIM holes

Email on the Android lacks some of the business-class features of full-blown desktop Outlook. DejaOffice adds features, such as notes and memos, that knowledge workers are used to. Other features include colour coding for calendar events, the ability to create custom fields and the ability to link contacts to calendar appointments.

NEXT PAGE: What's the earliest version that'll be supported

  1. Give your handset the same amount of control as a BalckBerry device
  2. What's the earliest version that'll be supported
  3. Deploy mobile virtualisation

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