Bring Your Own Technology

What Does Bring Your Own Technology Mean?

Bring your own technology (BYOT) is a developing phenomenon in enterprise IT in which a company’s executives and employees choose, and often buy, their own computer devices. BYOT mostly applies to mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers.

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BYOT is often referred to as the "consumerization of IT" because it represents the public’s increasing integration with their mobile devices and their expectation of having personalized devices, rather than equipment that’s chosen by their employers.

Bring your own technology may also be referred to as bring your own device (BYOD) or simply bring your own (BYO).

Techopedia Explains Bring Your Own Technology

BYOT originated among executives, many of whom had the latest smartphones, laptops and tablet computers, but were unable to use them for work. Executives’ demands for access to workplace applications, data and email via their own devices was echoed by other employees, many of whom were enamored with portable devices of their own. While BYOT is not a new demand, many companies are now supporting employee devices because the demand is so much larger and because it has become increasingly difficult for IT departments to claim it can’t be done. Ideally, or theoretically, BYOT should reduce overall IT costs while at the same time increasing productivity.

That said, BYOT does pose challenges for IT, including data protection, compliance issues and the potential for malware. Successful implementation of BYOT also requires new policies for IT and human resources. A skeptic of BYOT might refer to it as a situation where "my boss bought an iPad and now I have to support every tablet that comes in the door…"

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Margaret Rouse

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.