As any successful entrepreneur will tell you, success doesn’t happen in the office, it happens out in the field with your clients, customers, and investors. If you want to reach the people that are going to take your business to the next level, you have to get away from your desk and go mobile.
In a previous section we covered the ways your smartphone to access vendor apps that your business; in this section we will cover mobile computing options that will help you access your own business files, as if you were sitting in your office.
Modern Mobile Computing
One of the downsides to working from a laptop is the issue of carrying around copies of your private company files and crucial software. If that machine is lost, or stolen, you could be in a world of hurt.
However there are several mobile options that make it possible to carry your office with you, and access private files and crucial apps, while keeping them safe on a central server.
One option is the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2).
How the Amazon EC2 Works
The Amazon EC2 was created by Amazon.com, Inc. to provide cloud computing capabilities to subscribers. Essentially you can create a virtual computer on Amazon’s cloud server to host applications and files. Then, you can access that virtual computer from a remote computer, via a Wi-Fi or wireless internet connection, and run those applications, and access those files as if they were actually on that computer. You can also set up the virtual computer to accept connections from multiple remote computers.
You pay by the hour for the sessions, which means you can set up a virtual computer to run for days (like during a sales convention) or for only a few hours (like during a single sales presentation).
Having an Amazon EC2 can protect your company’s private files and processes because you can now access this information from the field without actually carrying it with you. If your mobile device is lost or stolen, you won’t have that precious information stored in its memory.
You can set up an Amazon EC2 session directly through Amazon, but it can be difficult and confusing to configure the virtual machine session. There are companies, like Simple Help, that can actually configure the sessions for you and load them onto the Amazon cloud server. Some companies can also provide technical support for the virtual session.
How Remote Access Software Works
Remote access software uses a Wi-Fi or wireless internet connection to connect to a physical computer (vs. a virtual computer with EC2). For remote access software to work, you need to use two pieces of software: the client software and the host software.
The Host Software
The host software is what you install on the computer you wish to connect to. Once you have installed and launched this software, you can set a password for access and determine which files and programs remote users can access. The host computer must be on and have the host software running to accept remote connections. You can also set up the host to allow connections from multiple remote computers.
The Client Software
The client software is what you install on the computers that need to connect to the host. Once you have installed and launched this software, you can access any of the processes on the host computer as if you were sitting right in front of the machine.
You pay for the software, and the cost varies depending on the manufacturer and the amount of support they offer.
Whether you go with Amazon EC2 or remote access software, adopting a mobile solution will get you, and your staff, out into the field and help you grow your business.