Friday, 20 January 2017 08:16

Okta reveals trends in cloud and mobile usage

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Cloud identity service provider Okta has revealed some interesting statistics about the cloud applications used by its customers.

Okta's core product provides single sign on to Web and mobile apps. This means the company is well placed to observe the relative usage of different apps within its user community, which ranges from small businesses to enterprises.

According to the January 2017 edition of Okta's Businesses @ Work report, "Office 365 increased its lead as the most popular app in our network in 2016."

Office 365 is used by about twice as many Australian Okta users as each of Box, Amazon Web Services or G Suite (formerly Google Apps), pulling way ahead of the others during the last 12 months.

Yet it is not the fastest growing app among Okta's local customers.

That honour goes to email blaster MailChimp, which has grown by 200% in the six months to 1 November 2016.

The other standouts are chat app Slack (150%), software project tracking system Jira (140%) and accounting system Xero (117%).

The list of the top 10 mobile apps in Australia contains few surprises. Office 365 leads by a country mile, followed by Salesforce.com, Box, G Suite, ServiceNow and Slack.

Then comes the Confluence collaboration app (like Jira, it's an Atlassian product), cloud business suite Netsuite, Jira, and the Wrike work management software.

A total of 89% of customers allow employees to use Okta with apps not provided by IT, and 56% of apps used fall into that category, including Amazon, Facebook, LinkedIn, Netflix, PayPal and Twitter.

Okta has provided support for private credentials since January 2016, largely doing away with the need for a password manager.

The most popular private apps in Australia are LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Windows Live, and eBay, while the fastest growing are MailChimp, Adobe, Amazon, Airbnb and SurveyMonkey.

"If we see hundreds of users using [an app], we would certainly use that information to inform our decision making with regard to purchasing an app as an enterprise solution," said Flinders University associate director of information security and risk, Aaron Finnis.

"We also use that app data, which is extremely powerful, to prioritise the existing enterprise apps we intend to integrate with Okta next to ensure maximum user benefit.”

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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.

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