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AT&T to Target iPhone to Enterprise 315

Posted by Zonk
from the thinking-outside-the-fruit-box dept.
narramissic writes "AT&T is reportedly preparing to market the iPhone to business users and is scurrying to ensure that its backend enterprise billing and support systems will accommodate the device when it ships. Analysts are baffled by the move. In addition to running an OS X-based operating system, which enterprises may be reluctant to adopt, the iPhone is also expected to have a number of shortcomings for business users, including not having a removable battery and not having buttons, which would make it difficult to dial while driving says Gartner's Ken Dulaney. Avi Greengart, principal analyst for mobile devices at Current Analysis, also thinks the iPhone won't be a good option for enterprise customers because enterprises won't be able to write applications for the phone."
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AT&T to Target iPhone to Enterprise

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  • by eviloverlordx (99809) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:23PM (#18857739)
    I think that the Enterprise has better communicators than the iPhone already.
    • Wrong (Score:3, Insightful)

      I'm going to preface this by saying I'm not an Apple fanboy by any means and I'm definitely not buying an iPhone.

      How did the RAZR succeed? By being a high priced toy to the wealthy at first. How did Blackberry succeed? By being a high priced email toy for business elites. The iPhone really combines both - a sleek design with email, web, and calendar built in. The downside is that it isn't compatible with Outlook.

      But, for the low low price of $500, only the elitist of the elite will be able to afford it
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by ScrewMaster (602015)
        I think the GP was referring to the Starship Enterprise.

        But I tend to agree, let the early adopters pay a premium, pay back the development costs, help Apple work out the bugs and design issues, and then lower the price for the masses.

        Worked for Microsoft, except for the "bugs and design issues" part.
        • Amazing how that comment reads so differently when you notice the article "the" in front of Enterprise.
        • Re:Wrong (Score:4, Insightful)

          by MightyYar (622222) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:57PM (#18858367)

          Worked for Microsoft
          Man, you aren't kidding... in the days when Palm still ruled, those CE machines were awful. I still can't believe how they tried to mash the entire Win95 interface into such a tiny little screen. Most people weren't that interested in filling up a $200 8MB memory card full of crappy audio or video to play on their $600 "pocket-sized" CE brick - they first and foremost wanted an organizer.

          What a coup that they've managed to turn around and actually supplant the PalmOS on some Treos, though I suppose this says as much about Palm's ineptitude as it does MS's success.

          And working in Apple's favor is a whole legion of early adopters that will buy anything with the little apple on it - similar to the people who bought those early CE machines.
      • by Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:55PM (#18858331) Journal
        If you look at the history of those two phone lines, you'll see why iphone doesn't have much of a chance. Blackberries were targeted to the enterprise from day 1. Sidekicks were focused on consumers. Despite high profile users such as Paris Hilton and others, Enterprises didn't ask for the ability to put apps on the sidekick. However, many non enterprise users have adopted the blackberry.
        • Except, if the allusions in the article are correct, AT&T (and thus Cingular) WILL be targetting businesses from day one... so who knows? And if they are, I am sure other carriers will follow suit in an attempt to not be left behind (assuming the iPhone takes off)... they definitely will not want to be left in the cold while AT&T/Cingular grab a bigger chunk of the business cellphone market. Only time will tell.
          • True, true. But thats the service provider, rather than the manufacturer. Its like selling a clown suit at Macys. Having Macy's call it an "executive:" clown suit isn't really going to cause ceo's to start wearing them.
            • I dunno about that... many executives I have met should be wearing clown suits. It would fit their intelligence and actions level quite appropriately... then again, I work for CompUSA (at least for a little while longer), so that may not hold true of the rest of the executives in the corporate world.

              Besides (on a more serious note), if the phone does have the correct functionality and capabilities, then this is doable... with the correct marketing.

              The toughest issue might be trying to market a "phone like

      • Errr... $500 is considered too high but for the elite business user? You must be living in a country where the mobile phone is _not_ a status symbol.
      • by Balthisar (649688)
        In general, why is it assumed that only the elite of the elite and business executives (in general) are going to be the primary owners of these? Sure, at $500 it's pricey and I don't see myself opting to have one of these, but it's less than 1/3 the price of my computer, and I was able to scrounge the pennies up for it because it's something I really wanted. If I thought that the iPhone would finally allow me to dump (a) my Clie, (b) my personal, Cingular phone, and (c) my work phone (Sprint) for a single d
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by cayenne8 (626475)
        "But, for the low low price of $500, only the elitist of the elite will be able to afford it."

        For some reason, there seems to be a number of slashdotters that think $500 is a lot of money.

        It still is to me, but, there are a TON of people out there where $1K-$3K is pocket change!!

        There are a lot of wealthy people out there who would gladly dole out $500 to get a new 'toy'. You don't even have to be a doctor or lawyer type either...plenty of people out there making money...so please, don't kid yourself, $

    • Re:The Enterprise (Score:5, Insightful)

      by pilgrim23 (716938) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @02:09PM (#18858595)
      "...not having buttons, which would make it difficult to dial while driving" I am sure that like the last fellow texting in traffic in front of me, you will be just as capable of endangering life and limb. You should be paying attentiont o the 2 tons of metal you are piloting. seriously. SHUT UP AND DRIVE!
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by eln (21727)
      Not only that, but they seem to already be using Cingular. After all, their communicators tend to cut out at the most inopportune times.

    • It really *really* depends on what you mean by "enterprise". Are there going to be "enterprise" users who aren't satisfied with the iPhone and will continue to use Blackberry/Windows phones? Yes. Absolutely. Will there by users who have "enterprise" accounts with AT&T who will be scrambling to get their hands on an iPhone? Yes. Absolutely.

      A fair number of the people who get iPhones will be business users who want to be able to get e-mail on-the-go, but otherwise wouldn't want a "smart phone". Pe

  • by RobertM1968 (951074) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:24PM (#18857765) Homepage Journal

    I dont think businesses will care what it runs

    I think businesses will be concerned with how it integrates with the things they need/do. Will it be able to open Office files? Will it be able to synchronize with Outlook? Does it make phone calls? Will it be able to synchronize contacts and such?

    None of those should be beyond the capabilities of the phone... it is all just a matter of what actually is implemented (or implementable with minor work) when the phone is released.

    • by wiredog (43288) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:46PM (#18858171) Journal
      Interesting that's third on the list of requirements for a mobile phone.
      • No, really sensible actually... I just thought that /. posters would be intelligent enough to understand the meaning. Yeah, it's a phone, it will make phone calls... but a few all-in-one, do everything phones make really poor phones because their physical design is more oriented towards text messaging or web browsing. The original Sidekicks (to me) were a pain in the butt to use as a phone (in comparison to say a Treo or many Win-SmartPhones). Apple's design blends the best of all of them (in my opinion). Y

        • Some of the pda/phone combos are poor phones, but decent pdas. Some are the other way around. Haven't met any that are really good at both, mainly due to ergonomic factors. Some are acceptable at both, however.

          I've played with many of them as I am a developer of software for them.

          As a Mac user (recently switched, from linux) I'm actually interested in the iPhone.

          • Exactly! :-) And the iPhone looks like it will be (at least) acceptable at both, if not acceptable as a phone, and really good at everything else (in my opinion).
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by ivan256 (17499)

      I think businesses will be concerned with how it integrates with the things they need/do. Will it be able to open Office files? Will it be able to synchronize with Outlook? Does it make phone calls?


      For the original Blackberry, the answer to all of those questions was "No".
  • by sharp-bang (311928) <sharp...bang...slashdot@@@gmail...com> on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:25PM (#18857777) Homepage
    which would make it difficult to dial while driving

    That would be a "feature" not a "bug".

    Please punch the first suit you hear complaining about that.
  • by arthurpaliden (939626) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:26PM (#18857805)
    Hum. I thought that you were not supposed to use a cell phone while driving because it distracts you from the more important task at hand which is guiding upwards of several tons of steel safely down the road without killing any one.
    • by MightyYar (622222)
      Unfortunately, you are one of the few who got that memo. You're also not supposed to speed, speed up on yellow, drive drunk, or tailgate.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by creimer (824291)
      It is in California unless you're using a headset to keep both hands free for driving. On a side note, I had a friend who was still talking on the cell phone when he got pulled over for running a red light and the officer came to the window. He didn't like the ticket that the officer gave him.
  • A little early? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MightyYar (622222) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:28PM (#18857825)
    Isn't it a little early to write this thing off as a business tool? Does anyone actually have one in their possession? Most of the executives with Crackberries use them for email, so I fail to see where the requirements for entry are real high. If the thing is deemed to be more of a status symbol than a Blackberry, executives will want it and it will be used as a business tool. AT&T might just be trying to keep it from being perceived as a toy, or "for kids". All it has to do is be a good email platform.

    That said, I'm skeptical that it will make a good email platform without a real keyboard :)
    • Re:A little early? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by King_TJ (85913) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:39PM (#18858053) Journal
      I think you're exactly right about AT&T wanting to make sure these units are perceived as capable of being *useful*, vs. very expensive "toy phones".

      Most business executives I've seen using a PDA phone aren't real concerned about its capabilities as an input device. They can *call* people back if they have something important to communicate back to them. They simply want to remain in touch with what's going on. Their phone needs to be reliable and basically free of crashes/freezes (Cough, Treo, Cough!). It needs to have a relatively easy-to-read display and easy-to-navigate interface, so it's comfortable to read incoming emails on. Ability to view attachments is critical too. Too much data arrives as a PDF file, a Word or Excel document, or a JPG or TIFF image for that not to work quickly and smoothly.

      It seems to me like the iPhone could meet all of these requirements with little problem, really. The "status symbol" factor is icing on the cake.
    • by pavera (320634)
      I agree with your sentiment. personally, i use my blackberry all the time, it is nice for email, but it certainly isn't a show stopper for anything else, web browsing is a bit clunky, I can't even imagine opening and working on a word doc or spreadsheet on the thing (are you serious, people actually try to open and edit spreadsheets on handhelds?!). The bar is not that high, a decent web browsing experience and email, that's all it has to do.
  • Sure they won't (Score:5, Insightful)

    by iamacat (583406) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:28PM (#18857841)
    ...because enterprises won't be able to write applications for the phone...

    • Because Apple will not release software for Windows before the hell freezes over
    • Because Macs will never use Intel processors
    • Because iPod will never play video and iTunes store will never sell movies
    • Because Apple will never make a cell phone
  • That is the smell & noise of the CEOs at Research In Motion, Palm, and Pocket PC, collectively soiling their pants after hearing this news.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      This is the real reason RIM is releasing Crackberry tools for WinCE and other platforms. They see the real threat, its called "iPhone"
      • RIM has been working on that stuff for *years* before the iPhone was announced.
        • by MightyYar (622222)
          Nope. Until the iPhone, there was absolutely zero competition in the cell phone sphere. That is why RIM's headquarters is actually just a giant indoor spa. It also explains why cellphone manufacturers have been systematically reducing the size of our phones. I mean, in the 80's you really got something for your money - a giant briefcase with a huge lead-acid battery. Nowadays the phones look like cheap little toys - we are getting so ripped off.
        • by vought (160908)
          RIM has been working on that stuff for *years* before the iPhone was announced.

          And Apple had Mac OS X running on Intel for years before they switched microprocessor platforms.

          I think you're making the parent's case for them; companies normally roll out contingencies like the Blackberry/Windows mobile solution when their market or viability are threatened, as Apple's was with the PowerPC's performance/cost plateau and focus on embedded device market.
  • by Fhqwhgadss (905393) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:32PM (#18857899)
    Implementing a horrible idea that is doomed to failure because they still think they're the only game in town? Cingular really is the new AT&T.
  • by Tanlis (304135) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:32PM (#18857903)
    Avi Greengart, principal analyst for mobile devices at Current Analysis, also thinks the iPhone won't be a good option for enterprise customers because enterprises won't be able to write applications for the phone."


    Here's an idea...Write a web app!

    It's so ingenious, I'm going to patent it. :D

    I imagine you'll be able to store files locally and if you can access them thru Safari on the phone, than just do that. If not, write some security and put it on an extranet.

  • by aurigus (39895) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:35PM (#18857951) Homepage
    I recently purchased a pocketpc based phone device. I really toiled with waiting until the iPhone comes out and getting that, but I heard some pretty sadening news - that Apple/AT&T will only allow signed programs to be installed on the phone. Unless they make that a pretty simple process, which I can't imagine they will - this will severely limit access to developers and software other than Apple sanctioned devices.

    This is the main downfall of the iPhone. I have no doubt it will be popular with home users as well as business users who use their devices solely for email/calling. It will be a status symbol. But unless they open their source and allow developers to really get into the nitty gritty, I don't see it becoming the "one device to rule them all".
  • Reading Gartner (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ackthpt (218170) * on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:35PM (#18857967) Homepage Journal

    1. Take grain of salt.

    2. Read Gartner analysis.

    3. Consume Ripple as required.

  • by hrieke (126185) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:37PM (#18858007) Homepage
    All the iPhone will need to do is:
    Connect to a POP / IMAP Email system (it does).
    Read PDF files. The image zoom functionality will work fine for reading PDFs.

    Then on the backend, the iPhone uses will get a special email account where all Office attachments are automatically converted to a PDF file before being sent to the phone.

    Fairly trivial thing to do.
    • by voidstin (51561)
      what if you need to edit it and send it back?
      • Editing Office files? On a PDA? Sorry, I've tried that on both a Palm (with Graffiti) and a Treo (with a keyboard) and I never want to repeat the experience. The screen's just too small and the tools aren't there yet. Viewing is fine but for editing, I'll wait until I get back to the office...
      • by MightyYar (622222)
        Most users don't do this. Most people who use Crackberries also have laptops. Viewing, sure, but editing... no. Even Microsoft's mobile edition is not very robust for complicated office documents.
    • TextEdit.app can already read .doc files with most features. I'm sure one could work around the limitations. Yeah, editing it will be a pain in the ass, but it's doable.
    • As you've already pointed out, supporting MS Office files is probably not a big deal. None of the "enterprise" users I know take advantage of this feature on their phones. The people who really do want to use Word/Excel/whatever on their phones are going to stick with a Windows Mobile device anyway.

      What is a big deal is an Exchange email client. Exchange is really dominant in corporations. I work at a very large Internet company. Many years ago all of the email accounts were on POP. There was a demand for E
  • Considering how many cars have an ipod interface as an option, it isn't conceivable that voice recognition can be used to operate the phone when it is in the ipod dock of a car. Or to use the ipod interface of the car to operate the phone. (The Lexus touch screen is incredibly good to operate a motorola razr, by the way.)
  • by hey (83763) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:46PM (#18858173) Journal
    If businesses let employees pick their phones (and this is a choice) then they'll go for this nice phone. Who wouldn't.
    • Who wouldn't? Me! (Score:5, Insightful)

      by argent (18001) <peter@slasCOUGAR ... ga.com minus cat> on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @02:28PM (#18858919) Homepage Journal
      Give me the choice of an iPhone and a plain black-and-white nokia bar-of-soap... I'll take the Nokia.

      Look at the iPhone's battery life on apple.com.

      Apply an adjustment for pre-release optimism.

      Apply a reality adjustment - the only way to get listed standby times is to run your tests next to a tower.

      You're gonna want two extra chargers, for the car and the office, because that's pitiful battery life even BEFORE you apply those adjustments.
    • f businesses let employees pick their phones (and this is a choice)

      Unfortunately, if these businesses use MS Exchange or run a Blackberry server, the this is NOT a choice. As cool as the iPhone sounds on the surface, no Exchange sync or Blackberry service means no the iPhone is pretty much doomed to be a niche consumer product, not a true business device. While I won't go around endorsing Exchange, the fact of the matter is that it is extremely widespread and the exchange sync is the biggest reason why

  • this is a device intended for geeks and hipsters. you listening, ATT wireless? geeks and hipsters.

    they don't wear wing tips and hold offsites at the golf course and discuss their stock options.

    ATT is making the fatal assumption of assuming if they have an expensive geegaw, sell it where expense is no object... upper manglement of large corporations for "business use."

    have fun, folks.
  • Seems to me the fact that it's not a desktop isn't an obstacle. It just has to communicate with *some* of your desktop-ish apps. Tell you what - give me a phone, ANY phone that capture my address book, group calendar, support a VPN tunnel to my corporate net, run a browser and send receive email, SMS, IM and of course be a phone and allow me to use them while I'm on a call w/o having to write down things on little scraps of paper then I'll take a serious look at it.

    And in the last 11 years I have replaced a
  • 1. Adopt OS that's all but unknown in the enterprise.

    2. No removable battery or buttons.

    3. Inability to write own applications.

    4. ???

    5. Profit!

  • by allanc (25681) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:53PM (#18858283) Homepage
    The implication being that the Blackberry has done so well because of all of the corporate PCs and servers running the Blackberry OS?
  • These analysts seem to underestimate the "gotta have it" factor among executives. My mother is an executive secretary, and she has to deal with her 2 execs wanting new phones as soon as someone in their ranks gets the New Whiz-Bang Phone Of The Week(TM). One guy even walks in the office, drops his phone on the floor, kicks it a few times, etc, all while saying "Wow I wish I had one of those new Blackberries that [person] just got".

    Its all just a big e-penis competition between them. Somebody will get one ju
    • At our division, we have maybe 4 or 5 people you could class as "executives", and 150 others, of whom about 50 get company-supplied cellphones.

      The market for "executive" phones is a fraction of the business market.
  • by Paulrothrock (685079) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:56PM (#18858335) Homepage Journal

    It doesn't integrate with Exchange Server, it has a music and movie player, and it can operate as a hard drive. This isn't an "Enterprise" product, this is a consumer product. This should be marketed as a replacement for your phone and your iPod, not as something middle-management uses to interfere with the folks who do the real work.

  • Web Apps (Score:5, Insightful)

    by whisper_jeff (680366) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @01:57PM (#18858365)
    "...because enterprises won't be able to write applications for the phone."

    It's too bad that companies can't write apps that run on websites.

    It's too bad that the iPhone won't be able to browse websites with a fully-functional web browser.

    Oh. Wait.
    • 1. Companies write apps that run on websites.
      2. The iPhone can browse websites with a fully-functional web browser.
      3. This is the absolutely most airtime-intensive way to write applications.
      4. PROFIT!

      (for AT&T anyway)
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Matt Perry (793115)

      "...because enterprises won't be able to write applications for the phone."

      It's too bad that companies can't write apps that run on websites.

      It's too bad that the iPhone won't be able to browse websites with a fully-functional web browser.

      Oh. Wait.

      Wow, you're right. Ever since all desktop applications were moved to the web I wondered when those mobile devices would catch up. Who would ever want to run a native application these days when they could use a web site? After all, everyone knows that accessin

  • Well, wouldn't Apple's VoiceOver tech let people dial their phone by just talking to it, rather than having to physically type in numbers? that with a hands free set would eliminate a bunch of phone distractions.

    Then if women would just put their make-up on at home, the world would be a better place.
  • by mveloso (325617) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @02:03PM (#18858457)
    Some companies learn lessons the hard way - by failing. Apple's had a number of large failures, but has managed to learn from those failures and make better things with higher margins.

    Most companies in the tech industry can't handle more than one or two failures; they tend to go bankrupt. Those companies that survive product failures tend to try and forget about them instead of learn from them. For example, Microsoft could have learned a lot from Micrsoft Bob, if they so desired. Instead, they buried old Bob in the back and abandoned all attempts to do any radical user interface changes for Windows.

    Apple, on the other hand, has a large number of failures to draw from, all of which are extensively documented. Apple also has a large number of successes, most of which probably haven't been documented enough. Why has the iPod really succeeded? Why and how has Mac OS X (and the Mac) been an unstoppable locomotive of progress?

    The Enterprise market is smaller than you think, and requires substantial investments with questionable returns. Allowing developers onto your platform incurrs substantial support and infrastructure costs. Enterprise demands also tend to warp your perspective, as large accounts exert greater leverage on the development process than thousands of individuals. They also don't pay retail, and tend to demand substantial up-front and back-end discounts.

    Apple has bypassed this in a simple manner, with a simple question: why have your enterprise apps on the phone when you have a live browser connection? If you can get to salesforce.com, google apps, and your custom web-enabled apps, who cares whether you can install a binary or not? In fact, not having to install anything is much better - no management issues. It's the freaking web, already. Everything that's important has been webified. Anything that isn't yet will be in 5 years. Everything that isn't nobody cares about.

    The only "enterprise" feature of the iPhone would be the ability to hard-wire it to your corporate network instead of using the public network. That's it. If the iPhone can do that, then the internal IT guys can do the rest.
    • Apple has bypassed this in a simple manner, with a simple question: why have your enterprise apps on the phone when you have a live browser connection?

      Airtime.
    • The reliance on web apps is the key. Of course, these web apps won't work if they are IE only and require Active-X. When the CEO finally realizes that his intranet is suffering from MS lock-in, will things actually change?
  • "Hi, I'm from IT and I brought you this I-Phone. Now, if you'd just hand over your Blackberry ..."
  • It appears many enterprise / business customers demand that cell phone Not have a camera to be in compliance with their IT/company policy.

    Does this mean there will be a camera free iPhone?
  • Perhaps OT, but curious. A lot of people are complaining that the iPhone sucks because it doesnt have a SDK or free development environment. Since when has any phone? Granted you can download the Java SDK for mobile phones, but can you actually load it to your phone? I'm under the impression the only way to get software on your phone from any provider is to pay them for a "service" to use software X for Y amount of time. I can't just write my own Reversi game and load it on my verizon phone. I hope I'm wr
    • Perhaps OT, but curious. A lot of people are complaining that the iPhone sucks because it doesnt have a SDK or free development environment. Since when has any phone?

      Any smartphone does, whether it's running Symbian, Palm OS, or Pocket PC phone edition.
    • by Jellybob (597204)
      I'm still amazed everytime I hear about US operators cripling the phones they're selling. I can see why they do it - as misguided as it is, but it shocks me that the consumers in the US are willing to accept it.

      In the UK (and as far as I know most of the world) we get our phones *without* features disabled. If I write an app I can simply bluetooth it over to my phone. The same for wallpapers, ringtones, MP3s, and anything else I want on there.
    • by conigs (866121)

      [...]and load it on my verizon phone.

      See... there's your problem right there. You're on Verizon. They gimp their phone's bluetooth just so you have to go through them for everything.

      I've used T-Mobile & Cingluar (now AT&T) phones that I could load up my own java apps with no issues at all (at least, no issues with getting the program on the phone).

  • As if Windows Mobile doesn't have its own set of "shortcomings," like being a buggy pain in the ass. As an owner of several WM devices over the years, I have a real love/hate relationship with the things. "Oh sorry I didn't get your call, looks like the phone app crashed and I need to reboot... yeah, I should really remember to do that a couple times a day."

    If Apple sees an opportunity to get the iPhone adopted by business, I'm sure they'll compromise on their no custom applications policy too, if that's wh
  • Analysts On Crack (Score:2, Interesting)

    by psydeshow (154300)
    They're baffled? Really?

    So you're saying the CEO isn't gonna want one of these things? Please.

    Also, you don't write applications that run *on* the iPhone... you write web applications that run in the *browser* that runs on the iPhone.

    I can't believe Gartner is this clueless... I think someone at Apple forgot to pay them to gush.

  • by DragonWriter (970822) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @03:09PM (#18859663)

    Avi Greengart, principal analyst for mobile devices at Current Analysis, also thinks the iPhone won't be a good option for enterprise customers because enterprises won't be able to write applications for the phone.
    Certainly, Jobs has indicated that the iPhone will only, at least initially, support Apple-approved signed applications. He has not said, that I know of, that third parties could not develop apps and get them approved by Apple, or that there would not facilities to alter the subset of Apple-approved apps available on different iPhones, such that those to the general public would allow all "general" apps, but not apps only approved for a particular enterprise, while an enterprise user could restrict its iPhones to only allow a subset of general apps and its own enterprise apps. This seems to be rampant speculation with little basis passing itself off as informed commentary. Note: I'm not saying the iPhone will have these features, I'm just saying that there is no indication, that I am aware of, that it won't, so simply claiming that enterprise users won't be able to install their own apps seems to call out for some reason to believe it.
  • Suits will love it (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Krommenaas (726204) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @03:18PM (#18859835) Homepage
    Dunno about the US but I'm almost certain that here in Europe the iPhone will be a big hit among the suits, especially early on when they're a curiousity and too expensive for most consumers. Never mind the features, it'll be a little status symbol and a bit of style you can buy. It's not like corporations have carefully weighed the pros and cons of all available cars and decided that only Mercedes, BMW and Audi have the features that suits need most, yet that's what 99% of them drive. As long as Apple can't bring down the price of the iPhone enough to make it a mass product like the iPod, it needs to target this market which will pay a premium for a prestige product. They would need a bigger range of iPhones then, and make sure the more expensive ones are visually distinguishable, to cater to the whole corporate hierarchy.
  • by glenmark (446320) on Tuesday April 24, 2007 @03:33PM (#18860091) Homepage
    I've said it before and I'll say it again: ActiveSync is an essential ingredient for the success of any smartphone device in the Enterprise market (and will eventually be the death knell for RIM). Even Palm has realized this with the addition of ActiveSync support in the Treo 650 and later. ActiveSync support is even more crucial now since Outlook Mobile Access (OMA) is not included in Exchange 2007. Nay-say MS all you want, but Enterprise customers live or die by groupware connectivity, and Exchange is the king of the hill right now.

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