Global CIO: iPad Becoming Kingmaker For Enterprise Apps

iPad's success in business market underscores critical need for competitors to match soaring downloads of iPad-ready enterprise apps.
From a New York Times article: "The software maker said its Chatter iPad app, which lets users gain access to data from corporate software programs, had been downloaded more than a million times. Marc Benioff, the chief executive of Salesforce, said Chatter was being used in more than 60,000 businesses.

"Of course, I still have a PC," Mr. Benioff said. "But I am using it less and less and I am using my iPad more." He called 2011 "the year of the tablet" and added: "If you call me next year, I will say it is also the year of the tablet. And if you call me in 2013, I'll tell you it's going to be the year of the tablet."

Those two examples should not be mistaken for aberrations, say two big IT industry research firms; rather, they exemplify the absolutely phenomenal growth that's expected in the mobile-app space. Check out these numbers from a recent post on

"As I mentioned in a recent column, the global app market topped $2 billion last year. Astonishingly, Gartner, Inc. expects the market to generate $15.1 billion in revenue in 2011… $27 billion by 2013… and north of $35 billion by 2014, according to International Data Corporation."

One more perspective, this one from an International Business Times article about how a noted IT analyst believes the iPad is pushing some CIOs to consider new IT purchasing models:

"We continue to view Apple as the clear beneficiary in our sector of paradigm shift in computing toward mobile devices with the iPad and the iPhone. We believe consumers are increasingly buying more laptops, tablets and handheld devices and 'logging in' to apps and corporate networks," said Ben Reitzes, an analyst at Barclays Capital.

Reitzes said this trend should mean that the key to corporate success over the long term is being strong in consumer devices that you use everyday. As a result, the purchase pattern is shifting toward laptops, tablets and smart phones being bought by consumers (all key areas of Apple’s strength), while direct sales of corporate products have shorter and smaller upgrade cycles. (End of excerpt.)

At a time when all businesses are looking to make employees more productive and aware of corporate priorities, and when speed of analysis and execution is becoming increasingly vital, CIOs need to get out in front of this application wave that will sweep the Pad and probably some of its competitors into the heart of the enterprise.


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GlobalCIO Bob Evans is senior VP and director of InformationWeek's Global CIO unit.

To find out more about Bob Evans, please visit his page.

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