IBM, Apple Deliver 100-Plus Enterprise iOS Apps - InformationWeek

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12/16/2015
02:36 PM
Larry Loeb
Larry Loeb
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IBM, Apple Deliver 100-Plus Enterprise iOS Apps

IBM announces that its partnership with Apple has yielded more than 100 IBM MobileFirst for iOS apps.

Building Apps Without Code: 7 Options For Your Enterprise
Building Apps Without Code: 7 Options For Your Enterprise
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On Wednesday IBM announced that it has delivered more than 100 IBM MobileFirst for iOS apps  developed as part of Big Blue's partnership with Apple.

The apps cover more than 14 industries and 65 individual professions that range from wealth advisor to flight attendant, to first responder, nurse, and retail buyer.

IBM said in its announcement that it plans to expand to new markets, including consumer products, automotive, aging, chemicals, and petroleum.

Air Canada, AXA, Coca-Cola Amatil, Japan Post, and Vodafone Netherlands are among the companies throughout the world that were selecting IBM MobileFirst for iOS apps.

"We see the transformation of our customers' experience as a strategic differentiator for our insurance and financial advice business," said Nicolas Moreau, chairman and CEO of AXA, in the IBM announcement. "We're going to combine the sleek experience of an Apple Genius Bar with the expertise of our advisors to not only give our customers the experience they want, but an experience that dramatically exceeds their expectations."

(Image: Mutlu Kurtbas/iStockphoto)

(Image: Mutlu Kurtbas/iStockphoto)

Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank said it is using the apps to create a new design studio for its banking products. ADIB has a presence in six markets: Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the UK, Sudan, Iraq, and Qatar.

The new design studio builds on the bank's efforts to digitize its products and services in order to enhance customer experience. The project includes new IBM MobileFirst for iOS banking apps. The Bank will also in the same effort use the IBM MobileFirst for iOS Trusted Advice app, which allows the bank's financial advisors to securely access and manage client portfolios from their iPads.

SAS, which is the largest airline in Scandinavia, will provide its flight attendants with the Passenger+ app developed by IBM MobileFirst. This allows them to access a 360-degree view of each passenger's past preferences, interests, and purchasing decisions to deliver a more personalized flying experience.

[See InformationWeek's iPad Pro Review. (Hint: bigger isn't always better.)]

IBM further said that it will integrate the cognitive capability of Watson into future IBM MobileFirst for iOS apps. This integration will be aware of the data that is input to the apps, and refine the output as the apps are used repeatedly.

"Our apps -- which currently represent an exclusive level of business value -- are evolving to deliver cognitive capability that refines insights to the most relevant information, enhancing the quality of decision making," said Fred Balboni, general manager Apple partnership, in the announcement.

IBM is also currently developing enterprise apps for iPad Pro that take advantage of the device's capabilities as well as iOS 9's multitasking features, which allow working in two apps side-by-side at the same time.

Apps with Apple Pencil support will be added to provide added precision and functionality to tasks, such as designing and laying out a room, logging transactions, or annotating maintenance logs.

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Larry Loeb has written for many of the last century's major "dead tree" computer magazines, having been, among other things, a consulting editor for BYTE magazine and senior editor for the launch of WebWeek. He has written a book on the Secure Electronic Transaction Internet ... View Full Bio
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larryloeb
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larryloeb,
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12/17/2015 | 11:10:21 AM
Re: Enter the Age of the App...
It seems that way to me, as well.

Ease of use--and the ability to communicate-- are the same no matter how it is used
Ariella
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Ariella,
User Rank: Author
12/17/2015 | 10:55:37 AM
Re: Enter the Age of the App...
@larryloeb yes, exactly. I always think it's rather foolish of some to dismiss consumer applicatons as irrelevant to enterprise concerns.
larryloeb
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larryloeb,
User Rank: Author
12/16/2015 | 8:10:22 PM
Re: Enter the Age of the App...
People in enterprises are consumers, too.

The same ways they use information to buy things can be used in their work, too. 
danielcawrey
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danielcawrey,
User Rank: Ninja
12/16/2015 | 8:06:24 PM
Re: Enter the Age of the App...
After many years on the market, it's about time that there are some compelling enterprise apps available. It's been an interesting ride for Apple by tackling the consumer market first and foremost, then going at the enterprise players. 

Other aspirant ecosystem providers should take note, especially in consumer plays. Hit the mass market, then capture the enterprise market. 
larryloeb
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larryloeb,
User Rank: Author
12/16/2015 | 7:53:55 PM
Re: Enter the Age of the App...
I fully agree with the thought. Front ends can be confusing to everyone.

And the hardware that they are used in helps here too.
Stratustician
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Stratustician,
User Rank: Ninja
12/16/2015 | 7:42:34 PM
Re: Enter the Age of the App...
True, but when you consider that a large amount of employees in smaller companies might not be as technically savvy to use traditional business applications, having an application front-end that has traditional iOS characteristics might help with user adoption.

Just a thought.
larryloeb
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larryloeb,
User Rank: Author
12/16/2015 | 7:25:44 PM
Re: Enter the Age of the App...
Well, this is running on Apple hardware.

Apps run on iPads and phones because Apple thinks people want it that way.

But Watson on the back end? That's something Apple can't do. Synergy here.
Stratustician
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Stratustician,
User Rank: Ninja
12/16/2015 | 7:14:34 PM
Enter the Age of the App...
I think it's pretty safe to say that we are getting to the point where everything is becoming app-based when it comes to a front end.  Personally, if it enables smaller companies to have access to easy to use systems and get Watson-powered analytics, it means a better customer experience all around.
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