Bank of America, Citigroup testing iPhone to replace BlackBerry

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Two of America's largest banks are actively testing Apple's iPhone as a replacement of their existing RIM BlackBerry devices for corporate email.



According to a report by Bloomberg, the two banks are evaluating the security of new software designed to support corporate messaging on the iPhone.



Bank of America, the largest bank holding company in the United States, and Citigroup, the world's largest financial services network, each employ over a quarter million people.



The trials reportedly involve over a thousand users between both banks, although neither has made their plans public yet. Both banks were among the first to support Apple's iPhone App Store with custom banking apps with the ability to perform secure transactions.



Update: AppleInsider has also heard from a source who reported Citigroup "is also testing iPad for remote workers and business travelers." A second reader reports that Zurich Financial Services is "also testing the iPhone and some proprietary applications to replace BlackBerrys."



BlackBerry's slip, Apple's grab



Once seen as protected by extreme customer loyalty, RIM's BlackBerry platform is now eroding in large part because the company hasn't been able to deliver a competitive user experience or vibrant third party app ecosystem outside of the company's forte in mobile messaging.



The Bloomberg report cited research by Sanford C. Bernstein & Co, which noted that among 200 companies that officially use BlackBerrys, 83 percent allowed their employees to use other devices as well. "Cost savings and employee preference were the two biggest reasons cited by companies for the shift in the study," it stated.



Companies have responded positively to Apple's iPhone in large measure because the company has made enterprise support a key engineering priority, adding features such as Exchange Server messaging, enterprise authentication methods, VPNs, corporate management of profiles, and remote wipe.



Following the company's efforts to make iPhone attractive to corporate users, Apple executives have noted dramatic increases in interest from Fortune 500 companies, with its chief executive Steve Jobs claiming 80 percent adoption or evaluation by America's largest companies last month.



Apple has also recently contracted with Unisys to develop secure software for iOS devices in order to attract new corporate and government sales.



Limited corporate maturity in Android, WP7, HP Palm OS



Companies are also evaluating other smartphone platforms, but running into issues with weak support for security and integration. The latest version of Android still lacks functional support for Exchange (particularly hardware encryption), 802.1x WPA2 wireless network authentication, corporate proxy servers, Cisco VPNs using certificates, OpenVPN, CalDAV, remote wipe, and managed apps and configurations.



Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 and HP's Palm webOS are brand new and untested in corporate circles. Both are starting virtually from scratch, as Microsoft has ditched its pervious Windows Mobile platform to sell the entirely new, incomparable Silverlight-based WP7, while Palm released its webOS new from the ground up just months before HP's acquisition.



That hasn't stopped Dell from announcing a wholesale abandonment of its existing RIM corporate messaging infrastructure in order to move its 24,000 employees to Dell-branded devices running Android or WP7. Microsoft itself has been marketing its new WP7 devices to consumers, and maintaining an old version of Windows Mobile as its solution for enterprise users.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 48
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 7,081member
    They should be testing Android instead of the iPhone. After all Android is going to wipe the iPhone completely out of existence in mere weeks. Dumb banks. When will they get a clue?
  • Reply 2 of 48
    emig647emig647 Posts: 2,409member
    Laying that sarcasm on pretty thick eh?



    This is great, Apple needs a shot in the arm to pick up the enterprise world. It could be a harsh longevity if they don't.
  • Reply 3 of 48
    And so it begins....'Enterprise,' 'enterprise,' 'enterprise!'



    I've had the original iPhone, the 3Gs and now the iPhone 4. When I first got the original iPhone, my business productivity and efficiency increased tenfold, just the email, contact and visual voicemail management was worth the price of admission.



    And now, as a Realtor, with the iPhone 4, I don't have to carry (or "forget to carry!") a camera. I can take interior photos because of the iPhone's flash and better camera. I don't have to carry (or "forget to carry!") the eKey because it's now an App.



    It's just brilliant basically having my whole business (such as it is) in the palm of my hand!



    I understand the 'enterprise' issues iPhones have had in the past, but as a businessman, I will never go back. And it has been very hard to pay the $120/month to ATT every month. My business is way down but I have struggled every month to keep my iPhone 4 on!



    I can't wait till I can afford the iPad and an MBA!



    Best
  • Reply 4 of 48
    I work for a very large energy company (Fortune 250).



    All of our executives (of which I am not one) already use iPhones and iPads to connect to our Exchange servers. They can also use their iPads to remote desktop to their PCs. We use MobileIron, Citrix, and RSA SecureID running on iOS.



    Two days ago, they allowed the rest of us to join the fun. It works very well.



    We have always used Blackberries. No longer! We have over 10K employees. We will slowly get rid of the Blackberries and the company will give us $30/month to use our iPhones. I'm so happy to no longer carry two devices.
  • Reply 5 of 48
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    ... the entirely new, incomparable Silverlight-based WP7,



    Do you mean 'incompatible', Dan ?
  • Reply 6 of 48
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by madweb View Post


    I work for a very large energy company (Fortune 250).



    We have always used Blackberries. No longer! We have over 10K employees. We will slowly get rid of the Blackberries and the company will give us $30/month to use our iPhones. I'm so happy to no longer carry two devices.



    I hear you! Like I referred to above...it's not just "carrying" the two devices. It's making sure they are charged, updated and not forgetting or losing them! My iPhone 4 has replaced the previously mentioned camera and eKey devices, but has also replaced a GPS unit, my iPods, digital voice recorder and a lot of paper files and forms!



    Best
  • Reply 7 of 48
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jackthemac View Post


    Do you mean 'incompatible', Dan ?



    Funny... can I use that?



    Best
  • Reply 8 of 48
    enzosenzos Posts: 344member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by christopher126 View Post


    And so it begins....'Enterprise,' 'enterprise,' 'enterprise!'

    ...



    I understand the 'enterprise' issues iPhones have had in the past, but as a businessman, I will never go back. And it has been very hard to pay the $120/month to ATT every month. My business is way down but I have struggled every month to keep my iPhone 4 on!



    I can't wait till I can afford the iPad and an MBA!



    Best



    Christopher,

    I like the cut of your jib!



    Cheers
  • Reply 9 of 48
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by enzos View Post


    Christopher,

    I like the cut of your jib!



    Cheers



    Hey Enzos, nice of you to say so! Made my day! Thanks.



    And best to you, too.
  • Reply 10 of 48
    juandljuandl Posts: 228member
    I think I heard the groaning from Canada all the way down here in Florida.
  • Reply 11 of 48
    The Thoughts of one Canadian

    When RIM first started and was earning the market share it deserved. As a Canadian I was proud. Unfortunately RIM rested on their rump and did not see the writing on the wall when Apple's

    first iPhone came out. What did they do, nothing by all appearances. Belated a couple of newer models but nothing to really grab the customer and shake him up. There is no doubt Apple has always shone in the idea department. Most of the computer industry in large part owe a lot to Apple. (just ask MS) So perhaps I am a little hard on RIM, but their response has been so anaemic I now feel no pity for them. RIM Had the Potential of becoming the iPod of mobile phones but did nothing. Apple saw that and is slowly taking them down a few steps.



    It may be fair to say if RIM had really seen the potential and taken it, Then perhaps there would not be an iPhone today. They would be king of the hill.
  • Reply 12 of 48
    moewmoew Posts: 41member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by emig647 View Post


    Laying that sarcasm on pretty thick eh?



    This is great, Apple needs a shot in the arm to pick up the enterprise world. It could be a harsh longevity if they don't.



    Your post holds no water. Sure they **might** be evaluating it, but that's all. How did you get to the point where this is a fact?



    Evaluation > fact.
  • Reply 13 of 48
    moewmoew Posts: 41member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by madweb View Post


    I work for a very large energy company (Fortune 250).



    All of our executives (of which I am not one) already use iPhones and iPads to connect to our Exchange servers. They can also use their iPads to remote desktop to their PCs. We use MobileIron, Citrix, and RSA SecureID running on iOS.



    Two days ago, they allowed the rest of us to join the fun. It works very well.



    We have always used Blackberries. No longer! We have over 10K employees. We will slowly get rid of the Blackberries and the company will give us $30/month to use our iPhones. I'm so happy to no longer carry two devices.



    Please state the name of the company. I'm sure you all have JB'd devices if they are in the hands of your "peeps".



    Honestly, if you can't control the device, how can you control your infrastructure?



    A good example is being rick rolled if JB'd. And don't tell me your employees won't do it, as it's 100% legal.



    Then they will figure a way for itunes on the work provided desktop... because they HAVE TO SYNC!. There goes productivity. I hope your organization is small and not what you stated.
  • Reply 14 of 48
    mgl323mgl323 Posts: 247member
    If companies continue to test iPhones/iPads and report positive feedback, then RIM is in big trouble.
  • Reply 15 of 48
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mgl323 View Post


    If companies continue to test iPhones/iPads and report positive feedback, then RIM is in big trouble.





    Agreed. They very well could be in the "business of going out of business!"



    Best
  • Reply 16 of 48
    aplnubaplnub Posts: 2,590member
    How long before and who buy RIM?
  • Reply 17 of 48
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by htoelle View Post


    The Thoughts of one Canadian

    When RIM first started and was earning the market share it deserved. As a Canadian I was proud. Unfortunately RIM rested on their rump and did not see the writing on the wall when Apple's

    first iPhone came out. What did they do, nothing by all appearances. Belated a couple of newer models but nothing to really grab the customer and shake him up. There is no doubt Apple has always shone in the idea department. Most of the computer industry in large part owe a lot to Apple. (just ask MS) So perhaps I am a little hard on RIM, but their response has been so anaemic I now feel no pity for them. RIM Had the Potential of becoming the iPod of mobile phones but did nothing. Apple saw that and is slowly taking them down a few steps.



    It may be fair to say if RIM had really seen the potential and taken it, Then perhaps there would not be an iPhone today. They would be king of the hill.



    Very thoughtful comments. When one thinks of the presence RIM had in the market, not to mention, the resources available, and looking at their last few offerings, it does seem they are in a bit of a panic.



    To me, it shows just how disciplined Apple's approach to just about everything is.



    (Given: Apple's missteps show it's not perfect)



    But I think the main achievement Jobs brings to the table is his unique ability to "corral" the programmers and engineers into producing devices/software that's not only beautiful but also intuitive to the average users. And the devotion to an integrated "ecosystem."



    Time and time again, MS, HP, Dell, Sony, Adobe, Google, RIM, etc., miss this boat!



    Best
  • Reply 18 of 48
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post


    They should be testing Android instead of the iPhone. After all Android is going to wipe the iPhone completely out of existence in mere weeks. Dumb banks. When will they get a clue?



    Dream on!! Android sucks.
  • Reply 19 of 48
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by MOEW View Post


    Please state the name of the company. I'm sure you all have JB'd devices if they are in the hands of your "peeps".



    Honestly, if you can't control the device, how can you control your infrastructure?



    A good example is being rick rolled if JB'd. And don't tell me your employees won't do it, as it's 100% legal.



    Then they will figure a way for itunes on the work provided desktop... because they HAVE TO SYNC!. There goes productivity. I hope your organization is small and not what you stated.



    C'mon. Stop mouthing RIM corporate PR.



    Control freakery of this sort is why you will become irrelevant in today's business world.
  • Reply 20 of 48
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by aplnub View Post


    How long before and who buy RIM?



    Microsoft. 2012. You heard it here first.
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