Once again we're living through a week of iPhone hype, this time celebrating, ogling, and debating the iPhone 4. As Apple's slogan puts it: "This changes everything. Again." The biggest concern for IT is whether the improved operating system, christened iOS 4, will make the new iPhone more suitable for use by large organizations with complex e-mail, data, and security systems. Says Computerworld:
Apple CEO Steve Jobs promised deeper enterprise support with its iPhone 4 and its iOS 4 software, noting that it will offer better data protection, wireless application distribution, and support for multiple Exchange e-mail accounts, as well as SSL VPN security.
That's all good and necessary, but Apple's improvements haven't yet won over analysts like the one at Gartner who told Computerworld, "The iPhone is still not at the level of the BlackBerry at its highest levels of security, or at the level of Microsoft when third-party products complement Windows Mobile. However, Apple's iPhone OS 4 enhancements are a step in the right direction." More of those enhancements:
  • Multitasking, which will finally let users do such things as listen to Pandora while they read content.
  • An improved location monitor that is more battery-efficient as users move between cell towers.
  • Push notification from remote servers even when an app is not running.
  • Task finishing so an app can finish something even if the user leaves it in mid-task.
  • Fast app switching so users can leave an app and return to where they were later.
  • Wireless distribution of in-house apps, a really important improvement for IT since there is no need to connect to a computer and use iTunes to distribute a new app.
-- Don Willmott