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iPhone for the Enterprise: My Unofficial iPhone Survey Results

What will be the most widely adopted enterprise mobile device in 2009?

Recently I used a great new facility on LinkedIn and started a poll. For this poll I posted a discussion link that stated "What will be the widestly adopted Enterprise Mobile Device in 2009?". Quite an emotive question in the mobile arena, I'm sure you would agree, but I placed it on various groups I'm a member of such as...

  • Enterprise Mobility
  • Mobile Architects
  • Mobile Developemnt Professionals
  • Mobilists

The poll is still ongoing but here is a snapshot of the results last week.

It also brought a very interesting comment from Vernon Germano, CIO Innovative Medical Software... which I would like to share with you.

Vernon Germano wrote, "The adoption of the iPhone as an enterprise device seems reminiscent of the early days of the PC industry when enterprise was forced to accept the introduction of PC hardware; after all, employees already used it at home and were bringing it into the office anyway. For that reason and because of the iPhone support for integration with Exchange services the iPhone is going to become a big player in the enterprise space very soon.

The iPhone, like the PC before it, is a compelling and popular device that is usurping the entrenched technology. The enterprise will change and adapt due to the device's popularity as it did for the PC decades ago. Whether or not the iPhone is the perfect enterprise device is less important than the fact that it is such a popular device outside of the enterprise. Other devices like Blackberry and Windows Mobile do not have the kind of popular support outside of work that compels companies to build infrastructures to support them in the enterprise.

Getting it right in this space has been notoriously difficult, Blackberry, Palm and Windows Mobile have had many years yet each continues to try to find the perfect combination of tools to achieve dominance but they all are missing that one factor that makes the technology not only productive but fun to use, their performance up to now has been abysmal. Bad user interfaces combined with horrible navigation features and under powered hardware hurt all of these companies very badly in the past. Problem is that these folks continue to squeeze every last bit of bloatware on to their devices trying to anticipate every possible need in the world, the end result leaves user's wondering why their expensive super phone is soooo sloooooow. The iPhone gets it, users want to use their devices with one hand, users want instantaneous response, they want an easy read interface and they want to be able to use a device that doesn't require a degree in computer science to unde rstand.

For those reasons the iPhone is on its way to the enterprise and will be a force to be reckoned with in the near term.

I would like to thank Vernon for leaving his comment and extend on it, by saying that the adoption wave has already started and will gain momentum with support from companies such as Sybase adding our own Enterprise functionality and development

More Stories By Ian Thain

As one of the Sybase Technical Evangelists, Ian regularly addresses technical audiences all over the world and his sessions are always very well attended. He also writes education classes, whitepapers, demos and articles for various Sybase products and publishes regularly in Journals such as SYS-CON's PBDJ and International Developer Magazine. He is also the Sybase Unwired Platform & PocketBuilder Evangelist and works closely with the team in Dublin, CA and Concord, MA on new features and demonstrations for the products. In his customer-facing Evangelist role, Ian is very involved with the design, production and testing of Enterprise class Unwired Solutions, that have been implemented using Sybase's Unwired tools for Sybase customers around the globe. In addition, Ian is a dedicated technical expert continually working with Sybase's key partners and clients to enhance the capabilities of the Unwired solutions that Sybase can offer to its customers. Ian can also be found on Twitter @ithain