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Licensing issues are on the rise as business use of smartphones increases (Photo: LG)

Many companies aren't fully prepared to deal effectively with licensing issues related to Cloud computing and mobile smartphone apps, according to a management survey.

The poll, carried out in Germany, Austria and Switzerland by IT consultancy firm Detecon, found that most companies deal with software licensing effectively. The active management of licenses is most often driven by software makers' audits.

But the Detecon consultants found that companies were having trouble dealing with the challenges resulting from Cloud computing and the new trend to allow a range of end-user devices for corporate purposes.

The key Cloud computing issue: When many users from different locations access a central resource for different lengths of time and with different intensity, mechanisms need to be developed to implement a licensing cost structure based on actual usage.

The growing range of Apps used on mobile devices poses an additional problem. At the moment, users tend to pay for an App only once. But in future, the industry expects most App builders to implement a licensing structure that requires regular payments during the time the App is used.

Detecon has developed a framework for a more systematic approach to software licensing management. The framework is called "House of License management."

Detecon is a unit of T-Systems, which is the business services division of Deutsche Telekom.