Apple’s iPhone Courts Enterprise, Disses Flash
At Thursday’s iPhone roadmap strategy event, Steve Jobs and Phil Schiller did a good job of showing how they’re gunning directly for the enterprise market, and how this "third platform" (as John Doerr described it) can make media and gaming available to all. But Steve Jobs comments a day earlier let it be known that Flash won’t be on the device any time soon.
It’s the Enterprise, Stupid
As the iPhone has gained in popularity, both in terms of sales and in terms of traffic percentages from mobile devices (as recent Google and Bank Of America announcements have shown), enterprise customers have been demanding a certain set of features to make iPhone compatible with corporate networks. As such, Jobs and Schiller spent significant time during Thursday’s event to talk about areas that iPhone is expanding into: enterprise security and media.
With the announced upgrade, the iPhone will support Cisco IPSec VPN, allowing IT administrators to handle confidential data with robust encryption. In addition, employees will be able to authenticate via password, two-factor token, or digital certificate. For those users on WiFi, the iPhone (and presumably iPod Touch) will also support WPA2 Enterprise with 802.1x authentication.
Apple also added another nice touch: By licensing ActiveSync from Microsoft, the company is allowing push mail, calendars, and contacts, as well as the ability to remotely wipe a phone, eliminating data on a lost or breached device.
The APIs: Good News for Video and Audio
Apple’s announcement of the APIs that form its new software development kit (SDK) hinges on the core operating system that the phone uses; without access to the Core OS, as Apple calls it, developers won’t be able to take advantage of tools such as the accelerometer and video positioning (landscape or portrait).
Fortunately, Core OS is the same kernel, thinned down, as the desktop operating system, Mac OS X, and core services such as SQLite, which means content management in a database form should be easier than most mobile devices.
The big area that the new SDKs show promise for media delivery is in the core audio and video services.