Tuesday Jun 02, 2015

Sofbang Launches Oracle Public Sector Mobile Showcase Applications

Sofbang, an Oracle Platinum Partner, recently launched the Oracle Public Sector Mobile Showcase Applications on Apple's AppStore and Google Play. Sofbang's clearly recognized the tremendous growth in mobility and is taking advantage of where customers are congregating, the new "first screen" of modern society. And by "first screen" I mean mobile has surpassed the almighty television as the most watched platform. 

Built on Oracle Mobile App Framework (MAF), the Oracle Public Sector Mobile Showcase Applications demonstrate the value of utilizing mobility in government, healthcare and higher education enterprises. To learn more, click here and here.

Don't forget, follow us on Twitter @OracleMobile

Tuesday May 26, 2015

Mobile – it is all about the user journey

By Ian Wallis – issue 3

Can you recall your first experience of early smartphone apps? Where they based on trivial, or informational use cases? The first iPhone 3 app I witnessed was a beer-drinking app, which would mimic a glass of beer being drunk empty as the user tilted the phone over to much hilarity in the office.

Fast-forward to today and we are in the midst of a mobile digital age where apps understand the context of what we are doing. Whatsapp knows which friends are online, Spotify suggests playlists, Netflix recommends films, Tripcase knows my next flight and Waze can get me home fast with two finger presses.

Every time I run one of our Talk Mobile workshops, I ask the audience what is their favourite app. Most people mention two, one they use frequently and one they love to use. And every time, I learn about a new app that does fantastically useful stuff for us.

This has involved a significant shift beyond information and transactions to user experiences where context and advice make our life easier, encompassed in what is being termed the Digital journey. And at the heart of this journey are mobile apps that know what you want to do next.

Nevertheless time and again we encounter mobile apps that come up short. Our banking apps should be warning us if we over spend this week. Our supermarket apps should flag up what we are likely to need or more importantly what we will not need in our cart almost like an inventory management service. We most certainly should not be receiving the load of outbound notifications and marketing clutter we get through poorly conceived push notifications or email.

Considering how mobile can enhance this experience is key: consider my entire user journey, allow me to upload a photo if it saves me time, use my location to guide me, if I complain get back to me immediately with what I require, push me stuff I really need to know and drop the rest. You don’t have to ask me my customer number, address, post-code, birthday and mother’s maiden name every time, you have access to my finger print.

By linking mobile, business process, data and customer insight these great Digital experiences are possible and they do not need to take years to implement. By using mobile cloud services, organizations can get started immediately, providing fantastic user experiences, driving loyalty, attracting business, achieving efficiency and gaining significant advantage over the competition.

To download our eBook on Oracle’s Mobile Cloud Service, click here.


Monday May 18, 2015

New Mobile Innovations Enhance the Marketing, Sales, and Customer Experience

Today's post comes courtesy of Chris Lynch, Senior Director, Product Marketing, Oracle Marketing Cloud. To follow the Modern Marketing blog, click here.

When I attend technology conferences, I get a chuckle when the presenter holds up a mobile phone and says: “These devices are changing everything.”

That’s because mobile is so pervasive—doing nearly everything everywhere—that it’s become passé and cliché to make such statements. According to research from Nielsen, 87% of US smartphone and tablet owners are using their mobile devices for shopping and that consumers check their mobile devices 150 times a day.

Mobile is big. We all get it.

But while today’s marketers and advertisers realize that mobile marketing should be a key component of their overall marketing mix and cross-channel strategy, they face significant hurdles to do it right.

One issue is around identity. As consumers use a mobile device, they create different identifiers depending on whether they log into an app or browse more anonymously on the mobile web.

The data they create—whether it’s behaviors, preferences, or attributes—can end up in silos across channels. In fact, 85% of digital marketers say the biggest challenge to cross-channel marketing is customer data that’s spread across multiple channels.

But help is on the way. New mobile marketing innovations can help marketers and advertisers target their ideal customer and orchestrate a mobile experience that’s coordinated with other marketing channels. Mobile touches different areas of the customer lifecycle—from acquisition to retention to advocacy. Let’s walk through these innovations with that in mind.

1. Enhance Mobile Advertising and Acquisition with Smarter Data Strategy  

Now you can connect identities across disparate mobile channels and devices to one person while easily building mobile audience segments using your owned proprietary data and third-party data. To target those customers with relevant advertising, you can use hundreds of pre-integrated media and ad providers so you can serve up a mobile ad on your preferred paid media providers.

2. Increase Retention and Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) with Mobile Marketing Orchestration

Too often, mobile messages don’t take into account other cross-channel interactions, especially when marketers try to reach consumers with new promotions, cross-sell offers, or in-store messages. Now mobile enhancements for B2C Marketers can be orchestrated alongside email, social, display, and other key marketing channels. 

These include:

  • SMS Campaign Management. You should be able to use a variety of campaign templates to support various SMS use cases within easy-to-use frameworks for building two-way customer interactions. Customers could then text in a coupon code to redeem at a store, or receive notifications when their favorite products are in store.
  • Link Tracking for SMS. Go ahead and embed branded short URLs in your SMS messages to get deeper insights into how well campaigns perform by monitoring SMS click through rates, conversions, and click recency. SMS click recency behavior is recorded at the individual level and can be used for advanced targeting.
  • SMS Keyword Listening. You can now listen for customers who text in keywords to short or long codes. When you receive a keyword, you can trigger a marketing program and an orchestrated response.
  • Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS). How about delivering rich MMS to mobile devices as part of your cross-channel orchestration strategy? What’s an example? You could use mobile coupons and promotions that include images, audio, color, and animation.
  • Push Picture Notifications. On Android devices, push picture notifications can now incorporate images such as coupons. Images sent as part of a mobile message entices recipients into taking a follow-up action. This could encourage users to open the notification and further engage with a mobile app.
  • Push Campaign Management. Campaign marketers need push capabilities that are fully integrated into their cross-channel marketing solution. Now you can design, configure, and manage all push campaigns with greater personalization with data tied to your contact profile table. 
  • Dynamic Deep Links in Push & Email Messages. Bring customers back to their mobile app by embedding dynamic deep links in push and email messages. When customers click on these dynamic links, it will open offers directly inside the mobile app, creating a more seamless mobile experience. 

3. Improve the Mobile Experience for Business Buyers and Sales Teams with Better Connections

B2B marketers need mobile connections that help marketing and and sales teams support better customer interactions with their product or services while they’re on the go.

  • Mobile Profile Access. Sales executives can now use their mobile device to access customer profile and Digital Body Language information such as customer web, email, and social activity. This puts rich contact data literally in the hands of a sales rep, wherever the rep is working. 
  • Visualizing Responsive Design. Make it easy to see how an email or landing page will scale across devices, including to a mobile or tablet experience.
  • Engagement Tracking. Business marketers can include trackable links in either SMS or push messages orchestrated within their campaigns to better understand engagement with their content.
  • Connected Vendor Functionality. Marketers can now connect to their mobile technology vendors of choice for SMS and MMS messaging, including sending images, managing short and long codes, and sending QR codes to their customers.

Mobile Case Study: ACE Cash Express

So what’s an example of a company successfully incorporating some of these mobile tools into their cross-channel marketing strategy? ACE Cash Express, a check cashing business providing payday loans and cash advancing services, is one. The world of lending is highly regulated, making mobile a critical channel to engage and communicate with ACE’s customers.

ACE uses behavioral data to personalize interactions across email and SMS as part of an orchestrated experience. For example, starting at sign up, ACE asked customers to opt-in for email and SMS during their loan applications in order to provide the relevant and timely messages they needed. Then they receive a series of messages personalized to where they are in the lifecycle and based on how they responded to previous messages. Each customer’s path evolves in various ways depending on when they sign up and how they interact along the way.

These campaigns have generated a 2x lift in response rates when SMS was used in conjunction with emails. Furthermore, the company reported that they saved more than 15 hours per month in company resources from this automation.

If you’re an Oracle Marketing Cloud customer, these new mobile innovations are now available and at your service courtesy of Oracle ID Graph, Oracle Data Management Platform (DMP), SMS Campaign Management Tool, Push Campaign Manager, and our mobile DMP.

While we discussed a lot about technology, your strategy is just as important.

Learn more in our upcoming webinar on Maximizing Your Mobile Marketing Strategy on May 27 at 11:00 a.m. PT / 1:00 p.m. ET, where the experts will highlight the value and benefits in using mobile marketing as part of an overall effective marketing strategy and identify the key points you need to achieve mobile marketing success.


Monday May 11, 2015

Creating Data Control in Jdeveloper from REST Service in Oracle Database

Cross posting from original post by Gökhan Göksu-Oracle

In this post I will be showing you how to create data controls for a mobile application in Jdeveloper to consume a REST service deployed as a RESTful Service Module on Oracle Database Cloud.

Oracle REST Data Services (formerly known as APEX Listener) is a JavaEE based implementation that offers increased functionality, enhanced security and file caching for REST resources.

For the mobile application we will use the A-Team Mobile Persistence Accelerator which is a lightweight mobile framework that enables data synchronization and persistence. This comes as a plugin that we can install in Jdeveloper (Help>Check for Updates)  At the backend, we will use the RESTful Service Module 'oracle.example.hr'  which is already deployed as an example service in an Oracle Database Cloud instance that exposes methods to select from employees table.

In Jdeveloper, start by creating a simple MAF Application called HR_REST. Then right-click the ApplicationController project and choose Business Tier > Mobile Application Framework > MAF Business Objects from REST Web Service in,,,continue to orig post.

Follow @OracleMobile 

Monday May 04, 2015

Cloud and Mobile, Two Sides of the Same Coin


There’s a tremendous amount of interest in cloud computing. The interest is certainly well deserved - but let’s not lose sight of mobile, IMHO, the other side of the the same coin that that is affecting every facet of IT and our daily lives.  

Cloud is all about infrastructure - whether IaaS, PaaS or SaaS, it’s where a large portion of IT's attention is heading towards.  Sure, cloud based systems have excellent web interfaces, but the new “first screen” is mobile. By "first screen" I mean that mobile is THE interface we spend most of our time on. The recent study from MilwardBrown has shown mobile to have surpassed TV! Think about that - mobile has surpassed TV. Remember the first music video ever played on MTV (you know, that channel that no longer plays music ;-)  the first music video played was Video killed the radio star, by the BugglesGranted that many of us when watching TV are probably also checking our email, Facebook, instant messaging, etc. and thus counted as mobile views butmobile is undeniably the future in terms of interfaces.  Better get on it.

Consider the following:

  • Facebook - the most dominant social media platform today has 1.25 billion mobile monthly users, of which 798 million are daily mobile users and 581 million FB users, and now 581 million only access FB via mobile.
  • Apple, the most valuable company in the world, is nearly $800B market cap, generates 70% of it's revenue via the iPhone
  • Google just announced Project Fi - a program to deliver wireless connectivity thru a combo of WiFi hotspots and partnerships with Sprint and T-Mobile. Interestingly, that's currently only available on their Nexus 6 phone. I guess they need the advantage to make any inroads against the other Android platforms from Samsung, Xiaomi, etc.
And here at the big O ranch with the fastest sailboats on the planet, we’re pushing hard on the mobile apps side as well as infrastructure.  For example, the JD Edwards team is approaching 100 mobile apps, which I suspect they’ll reach before year end.  And in terms of mobile platforms - keep your eyes open for the GA release of Oracle Mobile Cloud Services.  To get a sneak peek as to what MCS is about, check out the new eBook here

So like I said earlier, cloud is all about the infrastructure, but the new “first screen" to all that infrastructure is mobile - two sides of the same coin.

And perhaps soon?... I’ll get my Apple Watch (I ordered it at 12:05AM on the first day! :-\  ) so I can add to this mobile trend.  


Monday Apr 27, 2015

JD Edwards EnterpriseOne Mobile Enterprise Applications and Learning Oracle MAF

The JD Edwards team has been rocking the mobile scene with numerous mobile applications built on Oracle MAF. There's a new Oracle MAF learning stream here. And noting a quick intro below, a new JD Edwards EnterpriseOne implementation guide.

JD Edwards EnterpriseOne mobile enterprise applications offer users the ability to access and update important business data directly from a mobile tablet or smartphone device. Using Oracle's MAF (Mobile Application Framework) Mobile technology, JD Edwards EnterpriseOne has developed the following mobile applications:

  • Asset Lifecycle Management (ALM)
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
  • Financial Management Solutions (FMS)
  • Health and Safety (HSE)
  • Human Capital Management Fundamentals
  • Project Management
  • Supply Chain Management and Manufacturing
  • Supply Management

Follow @OracleMobile

Monday Apr 20, 2015

Mobile Cloud Service - Avoiding Apphazard Mobile Delivery

By Ian Wallis, Moble Technical Director, Oracle EMEA

IT organizations are reporting that their traditional three tier architectures are straining to support the needs of mobile users both for customers and employees. And why is this you ask? Well I believe there are many factors causing mobile to stretch and stress traditional IT, a few are listed below:

  • Change – the rate of change in mobile is high with a continuous stream of new devices, features, form factors, operating systems and updates.
  • Innovation – mobile devices can do unique activities such as measure, hear, smell, respond to movement, touch and gesture and many more
  • Connection –the need to handle less reliable connections such as 3G, Edge, GPRS and public WIFI networks
  • Personalisation – mobile devices are personal and apps need the right info at the right place at the right time to avoid being highly intrusive
  • Communication – a trend towards smart endpoints and simple messaging rather than centralized systems and orchestration models
  • Speed of continuous delivery – with the move to Agile development and DevOps, picking the right tool and technology for the job is crucial to be able to work quickly and effectively
  • Processing and battery life - mobile applications work best with simple REST based services rather than more heavy weight XML Web Services which are processor intensive
  • Scale – successful mobile apps can scale very quickly to a global audience of billions of smartphone users
  • Security – a completely new security model with different operating systems and devices, as well as controlling access to data and systems

This struggle has heralded the emergence of new IT delivery models to address the need for scalable mobile services. Services that can support a fragmented set of web and enterprise systems and technologies. Services that can be mashed up to form great mobile apps. One new category of technology is Mobile Backend as a Service (mBaaS). Not an ideal name, as an analyst recently pointed out at an event in Stockholm, asking: “Mobile Backend as a Service, is that even legal?”

Personally I prefer the term Mobile Cloud Services, which combines cloud and service integration with mobile-specific services such as offline functionality, data synchronization, push notifications, location and many others. These Services typically are built with cloud and mobile first in mind, and they leverage node.js infrastructure to provide mobile friendly services sometimes referred to as micro services or micro APIs.

Mobile Cloud Services need to cater for the diverse set of personas involved in developing mobile applications. New roles like Mobile Experience Designer, Producer, Mobile App Developer, Micro Service DeveloperData Scientist and DevOps Engineer have emerged, and these roles need to collaborate, working in parallel rather than sequentially. This includes the ability to create re-usable libraries of mobile services to fast track app development.

Over time I predict that the capabilities supported by  Mobile Cloud Services expanding to include a range of devices an "things" that are well beyond our current understanding of mobile.

Start considering Mobile Cloud Services to avoid the risk of haphazard mobile delivery. To download our eBook on Oracle Mobile Cloud Service, click here.

Follow us @OracleMobile 

Monday Apr 13, 2015

How to implement iBeacon in Oracle Mobile Application Framework

Want to alert your customer to a special loyalty discount offer when they enter the menswear department in one of your retail stores?  Want to present information about a famous artist’s life when a visitor to your museum nears one of the artist’s paintings?  These are just two of the many real-world scenarios made possible by the use of iBeacon technology.

This blog post provides an introduction to iBeacon technology and a description of how to build two different MAF apps – one that pretends to be an iBeacon and another that detects iBeacons and uses the local notifications functionality provided in MAF 2.1.1 to inform the user, even when the app isn’t even running.

To deploy these apps to iOS devices you will need an iOS developer account.

What is a beacon?

A beacon is a device that is intentionally conspicuous to draw attention to a location, such as a lighthouse sitting on the edge of a cliff. 

In in the Internet of Things (or IoT), a beacon is a small electronic device that transmits a regular radio signal according to the Bluetooth v4 Low Energy spec (otherwise known as “BLE”).  A beacon typically does no more than advertise its existence by transmitting a unique identifier and can last for months on a single cell battery.

Any BLE-enabled device, such as a modern smartphone, can detect a beacon by listening for BLE-based transmissions.

Whilst the possibilities appear endless, typical applications for beacons currently include retail stores, exhibition halls, museums, places of employment and homes, where users can be alerted to information pertaining to their current location within a building.

What is (an) iBeacon?

iBeacon is a technology introduced by Apple in iOS 7 that defines a standard for how a beacon identifies itself (or “advertises”) in its BLE transmissions.  Any beacon that implements this standard can be called an iBeacon.

Most beacon manufacturers implement the iBeacon standard by default, whilst some can also be configured to use their own proprietary protocol.  It’s also possible to configure a post-2012 iOS device, or Mac running OS X Mavericks (not Yosemite), to act as an iBeacon.

Whilst the iBeacon technology is included in the iOS Core Location framework since iOS 7, any BLE-enabled device can detect iBeacons and various libraries exist for use on devices running Android 4.3 or above.

How does iBeacon work?

The iBeacon standard defines three properties that determine a beacon’s identity:

  • A proximity UUID (universally unique identifier), which is a 128-bit value that uniquely identifies one or more beacons as a certain type or from a certain organization.
  • A major value, which is a 16-bit unsigned integer that can be used to group related beacons that have the same proximity UUID.
  • A minor value, which is a 16-bit unsigned integer that differentiates beacons with the same proximity UUID and major value.

Every iBeacon must advertise a proximity UUID, whilst the advertisement of major and minor values is optional.  All beacon manufacturers allow customers to modify these values on their purchased beacons.

A typical iBeacon deployment (e.g. within a retail store chain) would see all beacons advertising the same proximity UUID, those in a particular location (e.g. a single store) advertising the same major value, and the minor values being used to uniquely identify each beacon.

When using iOS Location Services, an app wishing to detect iBeacons must start by monitoring for an iBeacon region.  A region is defined by the proximity UUID and optionally major and minor values, and can therefore represent one or more beacons.  Consider an app for a retail store chain that monitors for a region defined only by the proximity UUID.  This app will be notified when any of the retain chain’s beacons are detected.  Alternatively, if the region being monitored is defined by proximity UUID and major value, the app might only be notified when a beacon from a particular store (represented by the major value) is detected.

Once an app has been launched and the user has given permission for the app to monitor for beacons, the app will be notified when the device enters a beacon region that is being monitored, even if the app is not running and even if the device has been restarted.  If the app is not running, iOS launches the app for a short period (around 10 seconds), allowing the app to receive and react to the event.  Typically, the app fires an immediate local notification to notify the user.

When a user’s device enters a beacon region, the app can start ranging for individual beacons within the region to determine its relative proximity to each beacon.  This is used to determine when the user is in the immediate proximity of a particular beacon, so that information related to that beacon can be displayed to the user.  The relative proximity is an approximation that can be affected by physical objects including walls, water and the human body.  Most beacon manufacturers allow customers to modify the transmission power and advertising interval on their purchased beacons, so as to fine-tune the distance at which the relative proximity is considered ‘immediate’.

When iOS Location Services determines that it can no longer detect any beacons in the region, it notifies the app that the beacon region has been exited.  In practice, I’ve found that this takes around 30 seconds, but some bloggers have reported much longer times.

Libraries exist for Android that provide similar functionality to iOS Location Services, but I have not explored these (yet).

How to create an iBeacon client app

Click here to continue reading the full post. 


Wednesday Apr 08, 2015

Reduce your commute, mobile apps make for efficient motoring

Posting on behalf of Ian Wallis, Mobile Technical Director EMEA

Posting on behalf of Ian Wallis, Mobile Technical Director EMEA

For an entire week I would wake up in a sweat, feeling disconnected from the world, rush into work, disorientated, feeling like I had lost my bearings, turning up to meetings late or going to the wrong locations, missing calls and emails and finally heading to bed at the end of the day frustrated and exhausted. You are probably wondering whether I am suffering from some form of mid-life crisis? Alas, this was something far more ominous, as for one week I experienced the panic of not having a smartphone to hand while I waited for the delivery of a new iPhone.

The biggest impact was felt on my commute into work. Normally my commute takes an hour during peak traffic. Usually I would have the benefit of a mobile app called Waze to guide and advise me through the maze of back routes in Surrey and Berkshire to get to Oracle’s Thames Valley Park. You can imagine my frustration as I spent an average of 1h 35 minutes commuting into work last week. At each traffic jam my blood pressure would rise as I imagined my alter-ego sailing past these points of congestion using the wonderful navigational recommendations provided by Google and Waze.

By using the Waze app I gain a 35% reduction in my commute time. Can you imagine the increase in personal efficiency if every car commute in the UK was cut by say 20%! We are talking about 16m people in the UK saving an average of eleven minutes a day, which equates to almost 3 million hours saved sitting in traffic and burning fuel at a litre per hour! I would have gained over 2.5 hours per week, 140 hours each year. By adopting mobile technology the potential social impact and economic gain in efficiency is utterly remarkable.

This is just one example of how mobile can become a key facet of getting through the day, reducing pressure and increasing overall personal efficiency. It also indicates how we are becoming more dependent on mobile services.

Oracle has recently researched “Millennials and Mobility: how businesses can tap into the app generation” and this research points to how important it is for enterprises to incorporate mobile into their offerings. If you are not engaging and advising customers and employees in the appropriate manner and at the right time, I can assure you that some other app will be.

By using the power of cloud services and drawing on the huge amount of data mobile generates to build engaging experiences, mobile can guide us to be more efficient and effective in our day-to-day activities. All enterprises should focus on how to leverage mobile or risk getting stuck in traffic. 

Monday Mar 23, 2015

Mobile App for Approvals for EBS 1.2.0 on iOS and Android

Reposting below for another cool new mobile app from Oracle, which btw, was built using Oracle Mobile Application Framework. Follow us @OracleMobile

About

Oracle Mobile Approvals for Oracle E-Business Suite lets you respond on-the-go to your pending approval requests. From your phone, anywhere and anytime, take quick action on approval requests for expenses, requisitions, purchase orders, recruitment vacancies and offers, and more.

- Quickly filter approval requests by sender or subject
- Review at a glance header and line item details, action history, and comments
- Approve or reject with or without comments, or request more information

Oracle Mobile Approvals for Oracle E-Business Suite is compatible with Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.3 and 12.2.3 and above. To use this app, you must be a user of Oracle E-Business Suite, with mobile services configured on the server side by your administrator. For information on how to configure mobile services on the server and for app-specific information, see My Oracle Support Note 1641772.1 at https://support.oracle.com.

Availability

Client

Oracle Mobile Approvals for Oracle E-Business Suite 1.2.0 is available on Apple's iTunes Store and Google Play Store for download.


This app works against Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1.3 and above and 12.2.3 and above.

Server

Oracle Mobile Approvals requires set up on Oracle E-Business Suite instance to support connections from the mobile app. Following patches are required to be applied.

Android Screens


Additional Resources

Monday Mar 16, 2015

Vegas, Baby!

No, I'm not going to Vegas. At least not yet. The poker lessons have been getting the better of me lately.  :-)

But you know what's cool about LV? The new City of Las Vegas application.  That's right, the new version of the City of Las Vegas app is built using Oracle Mobile Application Framework. (MAF) And since they used MAF, they built it once, and deployed it on both iOS and Android.

 You can find parking, where the food trucks are located, catch the latest news and if you're a local, report an incident that you want the city to look into.  It's nice the city makes an effort to reach out to locals and visitors. And if you're planning to go to this year's Collaborate 15, you should definitely check it out.

What else is cool you ask? I'm glad you asked. Below are a couple of research links from Ovum covering Oracle MAF.  Check them out.


Monday Mar 09, 2015

Barcelona, Mobile World Congress, and 93,000

93,000+

That’s how many visitors came to this year’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona last week. With 8.1 halls, each of which was the size of Moscone South's usual exhibit hall - that’s a big show! And Barcelona, what a gorgeous city. It’s no wonder Picasso spent so much time between Barcelona and Paris.


While I didn’t get a chance to see Zuck chat up internet.org, I did get a chance to meet customers excited to hear about Oracle Mobile Platform. In particular, the upcoming release of Oracle Mobile Cloud Service was a highlight of our demos. Not to say that Oracle Mobile Security Suite and Oracle Mobile Application Framework didn’t also stand out - they held their own in terms of interest, but the upcoming cloud service is a mobile game changer.

If you’re unfamiliar, Oracle Mobile Cloud Service is an enterprise Mobile Backend as a Service (MBaaS) that makes it easy to rapidly build mobile apps that access backend systems. As a cloud based platform  client and server side developers can easily collaborate. MCS offers built in mobile analytics so managers can fine tune access and gain insight of all their mobile deployments. Common mobile services such as security, data storage, sync and push notifications are standard making mobile development and deployment easier than ever. 


I just wish we could have shown it to all 93,000 attendees. Maybe next year. But if you can't wait, catch the upcoming Oracle Cloud Day in San Jose on April 30th.

Sunday Mar 01, 2015

New! Establishing a Mobile Security Architecture

Excerpts from a recent publishing.

Beyond Brute Force: 3 User-Friendly Strategies for BYOD Security*

In 1825 a painter named Samuel Morse was visiting New York City to fulfill a portrait commission and received word that his wife—at home in Washington, D.C.—had fallen gravely ill. The following day, another messenger brought heartbreaking news: Morse’s wife had died from her illness. Morse rushed home as fast as nineteenth-century transit could carry him but arrived to find his wife already in her grave. This devastating series of events led Morse to dedicate the remainder of his life to finding a means of rapid communication over long distances—eventually leading to the creation of the single-line telegraph and Morse code.

In 2014 Morse’s tragic episode underscores some of the forces mobile workers are still facing today. We are working longer hours than previous generations, many of us at greater distances from those we love. Our smartphones bring us closer (expanding Morse’s vision) with the people we care about, being no more than a voice call, e-mail, text message, or Facebook wall post away. As a result, personal and work communications are intersecting, with 89 percent of employees today using personal mobile devices at work or using their work devices for personal applications.

The phenomenon of Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) to work gives employees a kind of comfort Morse never knew, but it makes CIOs and CSOs uneasy, sparking concerns about protecting corporate data and preventing unauthorized access to internal systems. These fears are not unfounded: recent statistics show that cell phone theft has created a $US30 billion black-market economy. In San Francisco alone, 50 percent of all robberies are cell phone thefts. It is not a matter of if but when a personal device with your corporate data will fall into the wrong hands.

Download and read the rest here.

Monday Feb 23, 2015

Enabling Mobile Application Management with Secure Enterprise Single Sign On

Introduction 

Oracle Mobile Security Suite (OMSS) addresses BYOD challenges by isolating corporate from personal data on consumers’ personal mobile devices without needing to lockdown the entire device. Using a technique called containerization; the Oracle Mobile Security Suite creates a Secure Workspace (SWS) in which corporate applications,email and data are stored. Only authenticated users can access the secure workspace to run applications and access data and only applications provisioned or approved by corporate IT can be installed and executed from within this secure workspace. If the device is lost or stolen, corporate IT can remotely wipe the secure workspace without affecting any personal data.

The OMSS Secure Workspace (SWS) leverages OAM infrastructure for secure authentication (or even strong authentication/risk based access in the upcoming PS3 release) and seamless single sign on to corporate resources for all containerized apps. In this blog post I'll describe how the OAM Mobile & Social (M&S) OAuth Service allows OAM to provide secure authentication and enterprise single sign on to Oracle's Mobile Secure Workspace (SWS) .

How it Works


In order for the Mobile Security Access Server (MSAS) to authenticate users against Oracle Access Manager and retrieve Oracle Access Manager and OAuth tokens for integrated single sign on, the Mobile Security Access Server (MSAS) is registered as an OAuth Client with the M&S OAuth Service. In the current PS2 release we support the Confidential Client OAuth flow only; however in the upcoming PS3 release we will support Dynamic Client Registration as well.

Confidential Client Flow - In this flow MSAS is the OAuth 2.0 Confidential Client and M&S is the OAuth Server as well as the Resource Server. MSAS uses the clientid and secret entered in the container as confidential credentials for this flow. The confidential client first obtains an JWT User Token (referred to as User Identity Assertion) using this clientid, secret and the userid and password entered by the user in the secure workspace. The confidential client then obtains an OAuth2.0 Access Token using a standard OAuth 2.0 JWT user assertion flow on behalf of the resource owner. The OAM Tokens to access 11g or 10g protected resources are then obtained using the extension OAM Credential grant type using this JWT User Token. MSAS stores the encrypted JWT UT and the OAM MT (corresponds to an OAM_ID cookie for OAM protected web resources) in an STOKEN which is returned to the secure workspace app. This allows an authenticated secure workspace app user to single sign on to OAM protected resources with the OAM MT in the STOKEN and to any OAM OAuth REST interface using the JWT UT in the STOKEN.

Dynamic Client Registration - In this authentication model, a workspace is dynamically registered with M&S through MSAS and the workspace itself obtains the JWT Client Token after successful workspace registration. Compare this to the Confidential Client Flow flow above where the workspace app uses the client credential of MSAS. The registration of the workspace basically involves app and device profile attributes to be automatically sent to the M&S OAuth Server which creates a JWT Client token based on the unique "fingerprint" specific to the app and the device of the workspace app. The rest of the flow is similar where the workspace app itself is the OAuth Client (mobile OAuth client) and M&S is the OAuth Server as well as the Resource Server. In this flow we support step up authentication (using KBA or OTP) and device context based fine grained authorization during both user authentication to the workspace app and subsequent single sign on to corporate resources from any of the containerized apps. This is now possible because M&S uses its built-in integration with OAAM (using the Security Handler Plugin) to perform risk analysis based on the device and app context now available in this authentication.

Sunday Feb 15, 2015

Oracle @ Mobile World Congress 2015


Hola! Join Oracle next month at Mobile World Congress 2015 in Barcelona.  The premier mobile event of the year. I heard over 85k people showed up last year just for the tapas!  We are in Hall 3, #3B20. The Oracle Mobile Platform team will have 1 of 18 pods (Oracle has a plethora of mobile products) and we'll be previewing Oracle Mobile Cloud Service, showing example mobile apps, demos of Oracle Mobile Security Suite and Oracle Mobile Application Framework. Espero verlos alli.


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