Apple's plan to penetrate enterprise involves dedicated sales team, partnerships with software devel

Posted:
in General Discussion edited November 2014
Apple is looking to grab a bigger portion of the corporate software and solutions business with dedicated sales teams tasked with wooing big-name corporations, while at the same time working with software developers already entrenched in the enterprise sector.



Citing sources familiar with Apple's plan, Reuters reports the company is making big moves to expand its presence in enterprise, which include creating a dedicated sales force and forging strategic partnerships with software developers.

On the sales side, Apple has reportedly sent teams to talk to chief information officers heading up IT at large corporations. Financial services giant Citigroup is said to have been one target for Apple, but it is unclear if the firm signed on.

Sources claim Apple is working with software startups like ServiceMax and PlanGrid, which focus on enterprise solutions and apps. ServiceMax, an app designed to provide construction workers with easy access to blueprints, reportedly co-hosted eight marketing and sales dinners with Apple over the past year to show off their wares to CIOs and IT professionals.

Formal arrangements with other unnamed developers are also in the works, but none have been made public, these people said.

Shades of Apple's ambitions were seen in a recent partnership with IBM, which is just now bearing fruit. The two tech giants are working together to roll out "IBM MobileFirst for iOS," a blitz on multiple industries that incorporates custom-tailored software and services sold on iOS hardware.

In fact, the partnership appears to be the lynchpin in Apple's plans as IBM will provide enterprise-class software to rival current offerings from Oracle and Microsoft.

Last month, Apple CEO Tim Cook said IBM is preparing to roll out solutions across banking, government, insurance, retail, travel and transportation, and telecommunications sectors. Previously, IBM noted it had development of more than 100 different native iOS apps for the program.

Apple last week rolled out a new AppleCare for Enterprise website featuring hardware troubleshooting, on-site repairs and other services.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 36

    Good. Now let’s get a dedicated sales team for education. Get ‘em when they’re children and they’ll be Apple for life.

  • Reply 2 of 36
    I cant wait for them to "> roll out solutions.
  • Reply 3 of 36

    Apple has had dedicated Education Sales team since at least the mid-80's...

  • Reply 4 of 36
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    A spring iPad/Mac event with more details on some of this stuff would be great. I'd love to see some of the work Apple is doing with IBM. I think we're starting to see why Microsoft made a lot of Office features free on iOS. They know BYOD isn't going anywhere and most consumers couldn't care less about Windows Phone or Surface. Only thing is it's confusing as hell knowing what features are free and which ones aren't (and trying to understand the logic behind those choices).
  • Reply 5 of 36
    I cant wait for them to "> roll out solutions.


    Well, the link doesn't work ...

    But, at least, it's rolling downhill ... Or is it uphill :???:
  • Reply 6 of 36
    rogifan wrote: »
    A spring iPad/Mac event with more details on some of this stuff would be great. I'd love to see some of the work Apple is doing with IBM. I think we're starting to see why Microsoft made a lot of Office features free on iOS. They know BYOD isn't going anywhere and most consumers couldn't care less about Windows Phone or Surface. Only thing is it's confusing as hell knowing what features are free and which ones aren't (and trying to understand the logic behind those choices).

    I, too, would like to see some of the stuff the Apple/IBM partnership develops.

    I suspect their apps will open development doors for IT developers and others.

    Swift is supposed to be the lingua franca for the Apple/IBM offerings -- I suspect that will result in rapid enhancement to the Swift language, itself -- as well as t the underlying iOS and OS X frameworks ...

    Ya' know that all the latest hardware/software tech has gotta' be accessible!
  • Reply 7 of 36
    blastdoorblastdoor Posts: 1,964member

    I think Tim Cook is right to pursue enterprise opportunities and seems to have a much better temperament for it than Steve Jobs did. So long as Cook doesn't compromise on the user experience in order to placate corporate IT-orifices (and I really don't think he will), this is great news for Apple and great news for enterprise employees who would like to be able to use Apple devices at work. 

     

    It makes sense to start with iPhone and iPad, but I'm looking forward to the day the final piece falls into place and the Mac is able to finally (finally!) break the Microsoft enterprise monopoly. It's not happening tomorrow, next year, or the year after that. But by 2017 I can imagine that the Mac might be making noticeable gains in the enterprise. 

  • Reply 8 of 36
    The article is wrong - the blueprint app is PlanGrid, not ServiceMax. I should know, I'm a developer working on the PlanGrid iOS app.
  • Reply 9 of 36
    eriamjheriamjh Posts: 1,147member

    It took IBM to legitimize the PC to the industry in the early 80s.  It might take IBM to do the same for the iPad today.  I know our office clings to MS Office with a grip as tight as death.  It would be nice if Apple could somehow use IBM to get Numbers, Keynote, and Pages into the office to replace Office.  

     

    Now, I just need a replacement for crappy MS Project.

  • Reply 10 of 36
    Good. Now let’s get a dedicated sales team for education. Get ‘em when they’re children and they’ll be Apple for life.

    Worked for me.
  • Reply 11 of 36
    I don't see Mac ever having more than a small segment of the Enterprise market. Microsoft is simply too entrenched and corporate bean counters are to wedded to the Wintel duopoly.

    iPhone and to some degree iPad has made significant inroads and now account for the largest share of smartphone and tablet segments thus giving Apple a degree of penetration that Mac never did or will ever have in the Enterprise.

    I see this partnership as being more important to IBM than to Apple. That's because IBM's hardware business is in steady decline and software and services revenues are not growing enough to fill the gap. Most of the apps, IBM is focused on, are vertical apps or front-end apps for their Big Data solutions. For Apple, selling to Enterprises has always been 'gravy'. For IBM, it's their core business and one they cannot afford to lose. That's my $.02...
  • Reply 12 of 36
    xenadu wrote: »
    The article is wrong - the blueprint app is PlanGrid, not ServiceMax. I should know, I'm a developer working on the PlanGrid iOS app.

    Just checked it out, looks good
  • Reply 13 of 36
    robmrobm Posts: 1,068member
    karmadave wrote: »
    I don't see Mac ever having more than a small segment of the Enterprise market. Microsoft is simply too entrenched and corporate bean counters are to wedded to the Wintel duopoly.

    iPhone and to some degree iPad has made significant inroads and now account for the largest share of smartphone and tablet segments thus giving Apple a degree of penetration that Mac never did or will ever have in the Enterprise.

    I see this partnership as being more important to IBM than to Apple. That's because IBM's hardware business is in steady decline and software and services revenues are not growing enough to fill the gap. Most of the apps, IBM is focused on, are vertical apps or front-end apps for their Big Data solutions. For Apple, selling to Enterprises has always been 'gravy'. For IBM, it's their core business and one they cannot afford to lose. That's my $.02...

    Well, I'd take it as sure sign that MS is failing to deliver and that is why IBM is now looking to develop business with Apple. (Not the other way round.)
    For Apple it's a logical extension of its existing business to grow into the mainstream.
    You're right IBM needs to hang on to what it has in the short term and grow its business on to a new platform.

    MS has hit the wall despite its entrenched software. Corporate bean counters may have to soon start to think about counting beans instead of trying to reduce their IT overhead keeping those pos win boxes running.

    As I see it in the short term, the largest problem Apple faces in mainstream are the legions of MS certified techs and IT advisors that have had their snout at the trough for years and don't want to change.
    I have had many arguments, although always in a friendly way, with MS techs. Underlying all the banter has been a steely resolve from them that they know better. Which is a shame really that some of them are not prepared to look outside and even try different hardware.
    Lord, try different software - lol too fcuking hard.

    They'll change in time - or find another job. Prolly writing code for iOS :-)
  • Reply 14 of 36
    Could this lead to apple relaunching a server product, or is the focus only on mobile devices and services?
  • Reply 15 of 36
    Good. Now let’s get a dedicated sales team for education. Get ‘em when they’re children and they’ll be Apple for life.

    I thought Apple had education well covered???

    Apple has that segment by the balls -- Education even favors Macs as well as iPads where enterprise is still heavy in PCs.
  • Reply 16 of 36
    kevinneal wrote: »
    Could this lead to apple relaunching a server product, or is the focus only on mobile devices and services?

    The server market is a big cat fight that includes some companies in a do or die mode. No place for Apple to offer any advantages in features or price.

    Apple has staked out where they are strong and going aft that segment like a bulldog... letting the bottom feeders fight over the slim-margin pickin's.
  • Reply 17 of 36
    xenadu wrote: »
    The article is wrong - the blueprint app is PlanGrid, not ServiceMax. I should know, I'm a developer working on the PlanGrid iOS app.

    Nice looking system!

    Let us know, if:
    • You are writing or have plans to program in Swift
    • What you think of Swift
    • Are programming for the new iPad Large (just wink)
  • Reply 18 of 36
    robm wrote: »
    karmadave wrote: »
    I don't see Mac ever having more than a small segment of the Enterprise market. Microsoft is simply too entrenched and corporate bean counters are to wedded to the Wintel duopoly.

    iPhone and to some degree iPad has made significant inroads and now account for the largest share of smartphone and tablet segments thus giving Apple a degree of penetration that Mac never did or will ever have in the Enterprise.

    I see this partnership as being more important to IBM than to Apple. That's because IBM's hardware business is in steady decline and software and services revenues are not growing enough to fill the gap. Most of the apps, IBM is focused on, are vertical apps or front-end apps for their Big Data solutions. For Apple, selling to Enterprises has always been 'gravy'. For IBM, it's their core business and one they cannot afford to lose. That's my $.02...

    Well, I'd take it as sure sign that MS is failing to deliver and that is why IBM is now looking to develop business with Apple. (Not the other way round.)
    For Apple it's a logical extension of its existing business to grow into the mainstream.
    You're right IBM needs to hang on to what it has in the short term and grow its business on to a new platform.

    MS has hit the wall despite its entrenched software. Corporate bean counters may have to soon start to think about counting beans instead of trying to reduce their IT overhead keeping those pos win boxes running.

    As I see it in the short term, the largest problem Apple faces in mainstream are the legions of MS certified techs and IT advisors that have had their snout at the trough for years and don't want to change.
    I have had many arguments, although always in a friendly way, with MS techs. Underlying all the banter has been a steely resolve from them that they know better. Which is a shame really that some of them are not prepared to look outside and even try different hardware.
    Lord, try different software - lol too fcuking hard.

    They'll change in time - or find another job. Prolly writing code for iOS :-)

    I don't see Apple planning on replacing Wintel desktop boxes with Macs. Instead, Apple is positioning the iOS devices to take over the need for desktop PCs... Apple isn't saying "use this not that.". Instead, Apple is saying the "iOS devices will increase the effectiveness and communications of your employees".... By not attacking the PC directly, they avoid the IT pushback and let the PCs die a natural death in enterprise.

    I remember watching the same story play out with IBM Selectric typewriters. They were everywhere and considered by the users as (1) a status symbol, and (2) irreplaceable. Now, you can walk through any large office area and not see or hear one... gone.
  • Reply 19 of 36
    eriamjh wrote: »
    It took IBM to legitimize the PC to the industry in the early 80s.  It might take IBM to do the same for the iPad today.  I know our office clings to MS Office with a grip as tight as death.  It would be nice if Apple could somehow use IBM to get Numbers, Keynote, and Pages into the office to replace Office.  

    Now, I just need a replacement for crappy MS Project.

    MS Project seems to be in a world unto itself. Maybe it's too small a market, but it's been decades since anyone tried to take any market share from that dinosaur.
  • Reply 20 of 36
    eriamjh wrote: »
    It took IBM to legitimize the PC to the industry in the early 80s.  It might take IBM to do the same for the iPad today.  I know our office clings to MS Office with a grip as tight as death.  It would be nice if Apple could somehow use IBM to get Numbers, Keynote, and Pages into the office to replace Office.  

    Now, I just need a replacement for crappy MS Project.

    MS Project seems to be in a world unto itself. Maybe it's too small a market, but it's been decades since anyone tried to take any market share from that dinosaur.

    http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/five-apps/five-free-microsoft-project-alternatives/
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