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Major Mobile-Device Operating Systems

Part of the Mobile Device Security For Dummies Cheat Sheet

To protect data on mobile devices, you need to know a quintet of mobile-device operating systems that powers most of today's smartphone and tablet devices. Be ready for employee requests for access from all of these operating systems:

  • Apple's iOS: Incredibly popular operating system from Apple, running devices such as the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, and Apple TV.

  • Google's Android: Google's mobile device operating system, powering devices from several device manufacturers.

  • Microsoft's Windows Phone: A newer operating system from Microsoft that ships on devices from a variety of vendors. Windows Phone 7 represents a complete redesign of Microsoft's previous operating system, Windows Mobile 6.5.

  • Research In Motion's Blackberry: A long-standing favorite in the enterprise due to security and manageability features. The iOS and Android platforms have increased in popularity in recent years and have become alternatives to Blackberry in many enterprises.

  • Nokia's Symbian: Open-source operating system managed by Nokia. In 2011, Nokia announced that it would begin building devices based on the Microsoft Windows Phone operating system, rendering the future of Symbian questionable.

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