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What the iPhone 13 and iPad mini mean for the enterprise

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Apple’s 77-minute iPhone 13 event wasn’t the longest such launch in recent memory – the iPhone 7 reveal  took 119 minutes. But the company’s executives still had quite a lot to get through on Tuesday. Here’s what should matter most to enterprise users.

We all want the same things

To be fair, the division between enterprise and consumer expectations for technology continues to erode: Workers want to use the same tools at work as they do at home – and these days most employers feel the same way. Software and hardware are expected to put users first and provide well thought-through user interfaces that reduce, rather than increase, user friction.

The days when enterprise solutions could get away with being unwieldy or hard to use are quickly disappearing in the rear-view mirror. And that means to some extent even the consumer-focused features Apple highlighted have some bearing on enterprise IT. Some items particularly stood out.

Those carrier promotions

Take carrier promotions, for example. I noted them here, but these are emerging globally in a promising arrangement that should see telcos reap more benefit from their 5G infrastructure investments while giving the 95% of existing iPhone users who don’t yet have a 5G device a really good reason to upgrade.

Jefferies analyst Kyle McNealy notes:

“One of the most important elements of the iPhone 13 launch from our perspective is the carrier promotions (and effective subsidies) that are coming through even bigger than the strong promotions last year.” He observed “promotions as more aggressive than last year – they’re either a higher dollar value or don’t require a net-new line.”

That’s serendipitous, of course, given analyst Morgan Stanley’s belief that 5G is and remains the thing consumers most wanted from the iPhone, followed by improved cameras and better battery life. Apple met all three wishes.

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