Apple to take iPhone corporate

“On Mar. 6, at its Cupertino (Calif.) campus, Apple is expected to announce a strategy to use its Web-browsing iPhone to move into the corporate market. Apple will likely unveil plans to spur development of more software for the phone, to improve security on the device, and to make it compatible with popular e-mail systems such as Microsoft’s ubiquitous Outlook. Such steps may make corporations more willing to approve the iPhone for use by their employees. The moves will put Apple into direct competition with Research In Motion, whose BlackBerry devices now dominate the wireless e-mail market,” Peter Burrows writes for BusinessWeek.

“The iPhone may well represent Apple’s best chance in years of tapping the corporate market. Not only will employees be more likely to afford the phone’s steep $400 price tag with their company’s help, but many are already hankering for fashionable, useful alternatives to the BlackBerry and other existing devices,” Burrows writes.

“William Markey, president of telecom consultancy RelevantC, is skeptical of Apple’s prospects. ‘What’s the business case for the iPhone? Being able to listen to music on your [work] cell phone?’ he says,” Burrows writes.

MacDailyNews Note: RelevantC (RCBG) was founded by several Motorola alumni. In other words, refugees from a beleaguered mess of a company that is utterly failing in the mobile device market and is currently exploring the possibility of breaking up the company and/or selling off their mobile phone business. It’s no surprise that William Markey doesn’t get it at all.

Burrows continues, “the major appeal of the iPhone for corporate buyers may be that it’s basically a tiny Mac computer. It has the ability to run a huge variety of software. With its touch-screen-only interface and simple menus, it’s basically an open slate for whatever applications a company wants to run. One possibility would to bring Apple’s iChat videoconferencing software to the iPhone; another would be to create simple programs so salespeople can get the latest info on every customer they’re scheduled to see that day. ‘The iPhone is like the Mac for mobile,’ says design guru Jakob Nielsen.”

MacDailyNews Note: As IKON points out below, you’d need a clip-on mirror to do videoconferencing on the current iPhone as the camera and screen are on opposite sides of the device.

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Stoo” for the heads up.]

25 Comments

  1. I don’t know how it is elsewhere, but in my former agency a Blackberry installation or upgrade took at least two hours for software, configuration, synchronization, etc. On one of my first installations, I had the user put the password in the wrong place, and we had to reset and start over. That, too, should be counted in the life cycle cost of the device, but rarely is. Apple can only do better.

    That said, my old agency will probably be among the last to move to the iPhone. As it is, they can’t even procure new Macs to replace the older ones.

  2. Why would it take you two hours to do a simple blackberry installation or upgrade? It took me less time to install the blackberry BES server for the first time and set up a phone to it. You follow the instructions, pick the right options and then I think you need to restart…As far as adding a phone you set the password and add in the blackberry server and then click activate. Sadly though it takes probably 20 minutes for the thing to update the phone and connect. Not sure why. We have 20 blackberry curves through at&t;right now and I cant wait to buy an iphone and have the company pay for its minutes especially if it gets support with lotus notes. I dont see what is such a rave about the blackberry phones…. If my palm treo I had wasn’t so big and had a better OS on it… I’d prefer it over the blackberry. Until I get my iphone I put the iphone theme on the blackberry 😀 now it doesn’t look so bad.

  3. I showed viewing PDF attachments on my iPhone to my boss, a Creative Director, and he felt that the device would be indispensable to designers because it allows us to review layouts wherever we happen to be. Unfortunately, our closed-minded and practically useless IT department has been too busy deciding how many times an hour we should have to enter our password to access anything we work on to explore this device which would really improve our workflow. Typical

  4. Really need the caledar functions. We are a multispecialty physicain group – it’s important that we can utilize one calendar program for various phones. The ability to import outlook cals into ical would be helpful. I think also address book would be important. Cross platform compatablitly is so important- We use macs at home, I use remote desktop to tunnel into the PC in the office, and citrix to review xrays. When my partners see this level of compatablity, they become more sold on the mac. Several have purchased macs for home use. The dividends of smooth cross-compatablitly begin to pay off exponentially.

  5. Note to whatever, who asks:

    Why should Microsoft make it so hard for people to get their email?

    Microsoft is not about email or even software. M$ is a tax on business. More than just a toll road, it is an invasive meme that siphons money from everyone and gives only pain in return. The M$ tax is held in place by local tax collectors who have work fixing PCs and software. Some businesses are so mired in M$ dependency that they can’t escape, but as the market shifts and companies can no longer support the weight of stagnate thinking, these M$ systems can be dropped or supplemented with more timely methods.

  6. @whatever
    It’s not about Outlook. It’s about Exchange. Companies use Exchange because they want to control what email stays inside the enterprise, and what email is allowed outside into the wild. In business, information is valuable and companies use Exchange to protect it. IMAP puts everything on the WAN which is vulnerable to spying. Companies using Exchange will NEVER dump it to use iPhones. iPhones need to be made to operate within the Exchange framework. I don’t think this requires Outlook however. I would think that Apple could modify Safari for the task.

  7. “William Markey, president of telecom consultancy RelevantC, is skeptical of Apple’s prospects. ‘What’s the business case for the iPhone? Being able to listen to music on your [work] cell phone?’ he says,” Burrows writes.

    Very shortsighted. And typical FUD. Ever heard of iTunes U. or any instructional podcasts? The same idea can be applied to business use. But I seriously doubt Billy Markey understands the relevancy.

  8. You said, “Why should Microsoft make it so hard for people to get their email?”

    Er,……….. exactually how long have you been using a Mac? ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”grin” style=”border:0;” />

    Microsoft makes —- wait for it—- EVERYTHING HARDer to do. Mostly so they have the most control over what you use to do things.

    Just a thought.

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