Start-Ups

5 enterprise messaging startups to watch

Being able to quickly and securely communicate is one of the enterprise's biggest needs. Here are five messaging tools that could help solve the problem.

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Image: James Martin/CNET
Enterprise messaging was all the rage in the early 2000s, but tapered off soon after. Now, it seems that increases in mobile workflows, and the growth of BYOD programs have driven a renewed interest in enterprise messaging.

For employees of most companies, email is a secure way to get a message to someone, but it isn't very efficient. Critical messages can be buried easily under junk mail, event invitations, and newsletters. Enterprise messaging, especially now, is way for employees to quickly reach one another on their own terms.

For an enterprise messaging tool to be effective, it has to be easy to use and secure. It has to be easy to use to ensure adoption, and it has to be secure enough that the company can trust it with sensitive, proprietary information.

Good communication is essential to the health of any organization, notably so when it comes to large-scale businesses and educational institutions. These five startups are taking a unique approach to messaging that might help improve your internal communication.

Slack

Slack is, perhaps, one of the most talked about messaging tools out right now. The company was founded by Stewart Butterfield after he built the messaging platform to help his team communicate about a video game they were working on. Slack offers one-on-one messaging, different types of group chats, and direct messaging.

All of the content in your Slack account cis searchable through a single interface, and the service integrates with a variety of third party apps including GitHub, Google Apps, Heroku, Twitter, and Zendesk. Users can also create their own integrations using tools provided by the company. Slack is used by companies such as eBay, Sony, Yelp, and NBCUniversal and boasts

Confide

Confide is a mobile messaging platform geared toward professional consumers, but could find a place in the enterprise. Messages are end-to-end encrypted and aren't vulnerable to screenshots. In fact, you'll get kicked off the message if you even try to take a screenshot.

Users can sign up with an email address or a phone number. Messages appear with blocks covering each word. As the user runs his or her finger under the blocks the word appears. After the message is read, the sender receives a read receipt and the message self-destructs. Confide is available on iOS and Android.

TigerText

TigerText takes a more customized approach than other messaging tools. Messages are encrypted and will self-destruct, but users can choose the lifespan of the message. Users can also set parameters around message copying and forwarding.

Messages sent through TigerText are also compliant with certain regulations such as HIPAA, FINRA, Article8, and SOX. If compliance is somehow violated, TigerText will give customers up to $1,000,000 to rectify the situation. TigerText works on any mobile platform, as well as computers.

Eko

Eko is a newer app that was recently backed by 500 Startups. Eko is currently available on iOS, Android, and PC and connects with your work email account to bring in your contacts. Users can build teams within the app and split conversations based on specific projects or departments.

The app offers consumerization features in its built-in tasks feature, and the ability to send stickers in a message. Eko offers a free standard version and a paid enterprise version that includes a dedicated server, custom app icon, and custom app name.

Red e App

Red e App is an enterprise messaging solution that is geared toward non-desk workers who might not have the same access to corporate tools that in-office employees do. The app works with existing enterprise software to create an SSO experience, allowing users to authenticate with the corporate ID, as employees in the field sometimes do not have a company email account.

Administrators can push messages to groups of users at different levels, or in different groups. They then have access to the data regarding which users read the message, when those users read it, and whether or not they opened any attached files. This is especially helpful for departments that need to see compliance progress on a mandatory message.

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About Conner Forrest

Conner Forrest is a Senior Editor for TechRepublic. He covers enterprise technology and is interested in the convergence of tech and culture.

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