TORONTO – Our expectations of technology are wrong, said Carl Rodrigues, president and chief executive officer of SOTI Inc, at the company’s annual SYNC conference. The way we use it continues to evolve, but expectations are often based on past experience. And that can hamstring innovation.
“Sometimes we do things and don’t realize there’s a better way,” he said. “It’s not just users, it’s the people who make tech. I think that’s why some companies get disrupted. They keep enhancing the old path.”
Several years ago, SOTI, a relatively small but successful Canadian company (it has just hit 1000 employees, and has celebrated 97 consecutive quarters of profitability for its global business) that made its reputation in mobile device management, took a step back so it could, in Rodrigues’ words, “help break free of the ropes holding us back”. The result was the SOTI One platform, currently encompassing seven products, three of which were shown off in their final form for the first time at the conference here this month. On November 4th, the new version of the platform will be released to customers.
Along with upgraded versions of development tool SOTI Snap, flagship SOTI MobiControl, and diagnostic help desk SOTI Assist, the initial releases of analytics tool SOTI Insight, printer-focused IoT management tool SOTI Connect, and user communication tool SOTI Central, SOTI entered the identity space for the first time with the announcement of SOTI Identity, a single sign on (SSO) tool for the SOTI One family.
SOTI Identity will give users a portal from which to access all of their SOTI One subscriptions, allowing them to sign in either through SOTI’s own identity platform or using third-party identity providers such as Microsoft Active Directory or Azure Active Directory, Okta, or OneLogin. If the customer uses a third-party solution, its authentication is passed through; SOTI does not have access to the actual credentials. Two factor authentication from third parties is supported, but is on the roadmap for the coming year for SOTI’s authentication.
The other first release products also fill gaps in the suite. SOTI Connect provides provisioning, management and monitoring of SATO, Printronix, and Brother printers, with more to come as customer demand dictates. SOTI Central will be the home of support and documentation for customers, as well as a collaboration platform.
At the conference, SOTI also announced that customers may now host SOTI MobiControl and SOTI Assist on Microsoft Azure as well as on premises.
“Our ultimate goal is to port all of our solutions onto Azure Cloud to offer customers a complete enterprise solution,” said Roberto Roque, strategic alliances at SOTI,
“The cloud has created a lot of demand,” added Stephen Tanaka, CTO and GM Microsoft SaaS Partners, One Commercial Partner Group. “We’re here to help our partner grow its business. Customers are heading to the public cloud.”
The company is not resting on its laurels. An ambitious roadmap for next year includes the Xtreme Hub, a component for retail locations that will receive device updates from head office and then distribute them locally over Wi-Fi to other devices in the store , a revamp of the Android OEM Config product, support for more devices and operating systems in SOTI One components, and a new Wi-Fi-based indoor location feature.
“What we’re creating will make it easy to leverage mobility in a cost-effective way,” Rodrigues said. “To solve problems faster and take business to the next level.”