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Viewing documents on new platforms requires software protection

Jan 10, 2012 9:30:40 AM

With the proper study and investigation, it isn't difficult to optimize documents for specific types of technology. For example, files that can be viewed on tablets can be used by a company that wants to be able to see its documents on those mobile devices when workers have to be on the go. The same is true for smartphones, laptops and regular PCs running different operating systems.

However, some of the trouble that a multi-tiered technological set-up poses comes from the fact that sharing files between different platforms can be very difficult. Documents and programs that are easy to open on one type of machine might not display on another, which makes creating an agile and streamlined workforce that can be on the go more difficult.

Consequently, companies need to be able to transfer spreadsheets, articles and presentations from one device to another at a moment's notice. There are applications available on, for instance, the iPad that can display Microsoft Office suite files on that type of machine. However, they can be prohibitively expensive. For example, Documents to Go offers access to Excel Spreadsheets and PowerPoint presentations but costs $16.99 per device.

Conversely, apps such as Documents Free can open these kinds of extensions with little trouble at no cost at all. Unfortunately, they posses a lot less of the functionality and even fewer of the features that paid software offers. This means that companies need to strike a balance between cost and ease of use if they're going to deploy a technologically varied workforce with many different devices.

Another important consideration that organizations need to make is how they're going to protect the security of their data when pursuing this kind of strategy. The constant transfer of files from one device to another means that there is a strong possibility that files could be used by workers who don't need them or companies that shouldn't have had access to them in the first place.

This calls for a digital rights management solution that isn't only very protective of company's information. It also has to work on multiple devices and offer no impediment to the exchange of important files. One solution that many organizations attempt to use is a remote viewing application such as File Browser. It provides the ability to view documents on other devices without actually downloading them onto a mobile PC. However, this doesn't allow for editing or functionality and also gives a bit too much access to computers that may contain sensitive information. Choose DRM protection instead of any sort of remote access for the utmost in security.