IBM Anywhere is now available.
In several forums and groups I have recently seen, there is some confusion around the current IBM's mobile solutions for Maximo so I will try to give my personal view on this hot topic.
Before going on keep in mind that this analysis is updated to the current situation as of October 2012 and may become outdated in few months.
Roughly speaking IBM delivers two mobile solutions for Maximo: IBM Maximo Everyplace and IBM Mobile Suite. Let's have a closer look to them.
IBM Maximo Everyplace basically adds two features to Maximo:
- Allows to access Maximo from mobile devices browsers
- Mobile Safari: iPhone, iPod touch and iPad
- Android 2.1 and 2.2 native browser
- Ability to configure screens for mobile devices running supported browsers through enhanced Application Designer
IBM Mobile Suite is a family of solutions to provide remote access to the Maximo in connected and disconnected environments.
It runs on the following platforms:
- PDA: Microsoft Windows Mobile 5.0, 6.1, or 6.5.1
- PC: Microsoft Windows XP, Vista or 7
These are few screenshots of the app.
|Connection mode||Always connected||Connected or disconnected|
|Supported Maximo versions||Starting from Maximo 126.96.36.199||Starting from Maximo 6|
|Supported mobile devices||iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, Android||Windows Mobile 6.x , Windows XP, Vista, 7|
|Client technology||Runs in Web Browser (no client installation required)||Java ME native client|
|Barcode scanning||No ‘embedded’ barcode scanning feature||Native barcode scanning|
|Screen editor||Configurable using the standard Application Designer (WYSIWYG)||Configurable through XML editing|
|Configuration||No specific configuration required||Query and supporting data configuration needed|
|Provided applications||No Out-Of-The-Box application provided||Three version designed for specific business scenarios: Work Manager, Inventory Manager, Asset Manager|
|Extensions and add-ons support||Works with all TPAE-based products: MAM, TAMIT, SCCD, Utilities, Oil and Gas, Life Sciences, Transportation, etc. (no complex visualizations for Spatial, Scheduler)||Only MAM is supported but can be extended to include additional fields from industry add-ons|
I cannot go into every details of how the two solutions works and can be configured so I will give you my personal opinions about what may be the best approach (at the moment).
These are my thoughts:
- Last year IBM acquired Worklight. This is the strategic mobile platform for IBM so we have to expect some changes in this direction especially for Maximo Mobile. I would guess we will see something new before the end of 2013.
- IBM will be focusing more on Android. This platform is an open platform with a lot of rugged devices already on the market.
- Mobile platforms supported by Maximo Mobile are almost dead. Windows Mobile 6.x is close to its end and Windows XP/Vista/7 are not valid mobile platforms.
So what is my suggestion?
If you cannot wait for the next Maximo Mobile 7.5 release in 2013 and you don't absolutely need a 'disconnected mode' I would suggest to start mobilizing your workforce on Android/Everyplace couple. This will give many advantages:
- Everyplace is quite cheap and easy to rollout.
- Android is probably the best hardware platform to bet on for industrial usage.
- It will give you the option to switch to the next Maximo Mobile leveraging the Android devices you already have bought.
Note: Obviously I know there are a lot of non-IBM mobile solutions for Maximo.
If you want to learn more here are some useful links:
- IBM Maximo Everyplace 7.5 InfoCenter
- IBM Maximo Mobile Suite 7.5 InfoCenter
- System Requirements for Version 7.5 Maximo Mobile Suite
- Maximo Mobile Customization Cookbook
Update: If you are using Maximo Everyplace please take a look at my Android App for IBM Maximo Everyplace.