Apple, IBM launch MobileFirst iOS enterprise apps

Apple and IBM have launched what they said is the first in a series of iOS applications for enterprise iPhone and iPad users to access IBM’s big data analytics capabilities. The solutions, named IBM MobileFirst for iOS, mark an unprecedented collaboration between the two tech giants.

The apps are available to corporate customers within the banking, retail, insurance, financial, telecommunications industries, as well as governments and airlines. But the two partners said apps are being developed for other sectors too. Companies such as Citi, Air Canada, Sprint and Banorte have already announced MobileFirst will be available to their staff.

“This is a big step for iPhone and iPad in the enterprise, and we can’t wait to see the exciting new ways organisations will put iOS devices to work,” Philip Schiller, Apple’s SVP of Worldwide Marketing said.

“The business world has gone mobile, and Apple and IBM are bringing together the world’s best technology with the smartest data and analytics to help businesses redefine how work gets done.”

According to Apple the apps, which are embedded with analytics and linked to core enterprise processes, are customisable, easily deployed, managed and upgraded via IBM’s dedicated iOS device cloud.

“What we’re delivering aims directly at the new quest of business- smart technologies that unlock new value at the intersection of big data and individual engagement,” Bridget van Kralingen, SVP at IBM Global Business Services said.

“Our collaboration combines IBM’s industry expertise and unmatched position in enterprise computing with Apple’s legendary user experience and excellence in product design to lift the performance of a new generation of business professionals.”

As the big data market gathers momentum, we are likely to see more of these kinds of partnerships between device makers, telcos and IT vendors alike. In the enterprise sector industries across the board are also increasingly looking to digitalise as much of their businesses as possible.

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