By Lee Rickwood
Xerox is now developing mobile apps.
The well-known copier, printer and office hardware manufacturer is offering a suite of software tools designed for companies large and small, and the rapidly evolving BYOD (bring your own device) business landscape.
The new ConnectKey software is embedded into the company’s multi-function printers (MFPs) and other multi-function electronic (MFE) devices, creating a new ‘eco-system’ of control and connect options for popular office equipment.
Xerox sees that the growth and size of today’s mobile workforce can introduce documentation troubles in the enterprise, and that customer concerns about data delivery and information security can impact a company’s profitability, so it’s offering the ConnectKey solution.
It’s a big play for Xerox, and the company wants to position itself as just as flexible, agile and mobile as the smart device-enabled customer base it serves.
“We all need 24/7/365 access these days,” the company’s Office and Business Solutions President Rick Dastin explained. “Our workforce and workplace is being transformed by mobility, massive amounts of data and the need to manage it all more securely.”
Together with its third-party partners, Xerox is releasing a number of actual products and services that are compatible with the new ConnectKey platform, starting with 16 new products now with more to come this year.
For example, the ColorQube 9300 series, due in Q2, boasts a print speed as fast as 38 to 55 pages per minute for colour documents, and 50 to 60 ppm in black-and-white. It uses a solid ink technology for the efficiency- and environmentally- conscious user.
Xerox office printers and scanners (be they B&W or colour, solid ink or laser) will not only have more advanced features in the new environment, they will be controllable by and from almost any IT connected device.
Android, iOS, Windows and BlackBerry smartphones are supported by Xerox, which notes the importance of giving both users and IT managers more control and peace of mind in BYOD-equipped workplaces.
Xerox, together with McAfee and Cisco, is also embedding security protection into the Connect Key data paths that extends to and from connected devices.
Beyond the features and functions that Xerox has developed, its new platform also comes with an App Studio, so users, vendors and VAR partners can develop their own customizable applications and work process supports.
There’s also a feature that lets users move documents in and out of online repositories such as SharePoint Online, Google Drive, DropBox, Evernote, PaperPort Anywhere and Salesforce.com, called ConnectKey Share to Cloud.
Of course, true to its roots, Xerox lets users print documents from anywhere – and then convert them to searchable and widely compatible digital files.