iPhone

Poll: When iPhone gets its enterprise-ready upgrade, will your IT department support it?

With the release of the much-anticipated software update for the iPhone coming this month, TechRepublic is polling IT professionals to see if the new enterprise-ready features are enough to convince their IT departments to support it.

Apple announced in March that it would beef up security, include support for Exchange ActiveSync, and release a software development kit (SDK) for the next version of the iPhone. At that time, a TechRepublic poll showed that about 50% businesses had iPhone users while only 27% of IT departments supported it.

With the release of the much-anticipated software update for the iPhone coming this month, TechRepublic is polling IT professionals to see if the new enterprise-ready features are enough to convince their IT departments to support it.

About

Jason Hiner is Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He writes about the people, products, and ideas changing how we live and work in the 21st century. He's co-author of the upcoming book, Follow the Geeks.

7 comments
CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

We support company-issued equipment only. Right now we're issuing Blackberrys.

itpro_z
itpro_z

Allow our users to install iTunes, QuickTime, and Safari on their computers so they can play with an iPhone? Yeah, right. You do realize that there is more to being "enterprise-ready" than just connecting to Exchange?

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

I'm not advocating for it. I'm just asking the question. The iTunes sync issue is definitely one of the biggest drawbacks with iPhone in the enterprise. Exchange ActiveSync makes that a little bit less of an issue. However, keep in mind that the iPhone is also beefing up security, adding remote-kill, and including third-party app support, so Exchange ActiveSync is not the only enterprise feature it's adding.

itpro_z
itpro_z

I have yet to see anything from Apple to make me believe that they even understand the concept. Most of us in IT are in the mindset of removing Apple software on sight from our user's PCs. QuickTime and Safari are severe security risks, and Apple's arrogance in pushing iTunes and Safari through QTs update process is quite annoying. I have removed QT from work computers, only to have the user complain than now their iTunes no longer works. Of course, it is reasonable to ask what purpose iTunes serves on their work PC, but it is equally reasonable to ask why Apple requires QT to play iTunes content. Finally, we should all demand that Apple show some commitment to security before allowing them onto our networks.

dcolbert
dcolbert

Does Windows Media and such tight IE integration in Win32 have? I'm not disagreeing with you about Apple, iTunes, Safari and QuickTime, but if you asked me, they're just copying the playbook from Redmond. I think it comes down to an organizational choice. The BRIGHT thing to do is limit IT supported smart-phones to a particular range of well tested, security rich devices, regardless of platform choice. The ability to lock with secure access codes that are not a huge detriment to ease-of-use is a critical perspective for enterprise use, in my opinion. The XV6800 HTC seems well designed in this regard. Ability to encrypt removable media is also important. But all smart phones are a vector for introduction of unwanted information onto the network and for leaking internal information outside of the network. If the iPhone 2 offered compelling features for a reasonable price point with a justifiable TCO then it would make sense to make the iPhone the prefered device in the scenario I outline above. But, I doubt it will be these things. One of my network engineers has an iPhone. It isn't on our corporate network currently.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

Original post: http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/hiner/?p=589 With the SDK, security features, and Exchange support coming to the iPhone during June, will your IT department now support it?

eclypse
eclypse

I wish the iPhone had these security features in the first iteration of the device. Right now, we are forced to use Blackberries because we are married to Verizon. This has forced us to buy Exchange (which we do not need for anything else). Sendmail has worked for us (and many others) for over 10 years with no problems and no license fees. Lotus Notes/Domino and Groupwise are even more expensive than Exchange. I personally despise any product that dictates to me what other (usually very expensive) software I must purchase to use their proprietary crap. It's not like there aren't enough open standards for just about anything you ever want to do. Blackberrry/RIM just happens to top my list of offenders right now. And yes, I agree completely with the people who dislike the iTunes/QT/Safari unholy trinity. On the one hand, Apple makes their OS and hardware fairly compatible with just about anything. On the other, they force you to use their junk that you may not want to use. AT&T comes to mind... *sigh* All I know is that the new Blackberries are horrible in comparison to the ease of use of the iPhone. The iPhone is slicker, does more, works with more stuff, and has a much more intuitive UI. Anyone I know who has used one that has given me their opinion says that the iPhone is light years ahead of anything Micro$oft or RIM or just about anything else.

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