It has been 10 years since the iPhone came into existence. We have seen iPhone go from Mp3 player feature phone to full blown handheld computers that find it ways through the enterprise market. Major number of people uses an Apple iPhone with a large number using the fantastic Microsoft Outlook client for email and calendar management.
It is a surprise that Microsoft helped to make the iPhone a great business phone when 10 years ago it was Microsoft that had much of the enterprise market share for the Windows Phone. Apple is committed to the business support as one can clearly see on its iPhone business website. It has been a great journey since last decade that brought us where we are today.
When the first version of the iPhone was released by the Apple, the operating system didn’t have the same SDK that was released in 2008 of March. Before that, it was called as a mobile version of the OS X. Initial version of the operating system was so limited that it didn’t had an app store or any third party apps. The OS core provided the essential apps such as phone dialer, messaging client, notes, web browser, music player, clock, calculator and a few more apps. There were boundaries in the E-mail services which was till iMap and POP so one can have a clearer view focused on the consumer and not the enterprise market.
The foremost thing many business noticed immediately was the support for Microsoft Exchange ActivitySync. Support was less and limited, but atleast email, calendar, contacts and global address lookup were supported. The major feature of the iPhone OS2 was the introduction of the App Store with the third party applications. Businesses would create applications and begin to optimize the iPhone for the work purposes. Encryption was not provided in any operating system, so the iPhone had the ways to compete with the blackberry. Some config files were introduced by Apple which meant that IT department would have more control on the setup and management device.
As a long time user of various PDAs starting in 1987, it was funny for the many mobile device enthusiast that the big new feature of the iPhone OS3 was similar since other mobile operating system had it for years. Developing the similar OS was important for the business though to improve efficiency in communications and collaborations. The first attempt at encryption was provided with iPhone OS3. Encryption included the ability for the restrictions in config profiles and encrypted backups.
In June 2010, Apple changed the name of its mobile operating system to the iOS with the version 4.0. iOS 4 provided the ability for IT departments to manage iPhones wirelessly over-the-air. This convenience was an important step towards making the iPhone a more better option to manage remotely and give better control of the iPhone to the companies.
When iOS 5 was launched in 2011, one had to no longer make the use of iTunes to activate and manage the Apple iPhone. Apple also launched the volume purchasing program and custom B2B program to attract the firms. Siri was also launched in iOS5 but didn’t launch with many enterprise features but could save time in performing the task.
IT departments were used to company-wide image deployments for PCs and with iOS 6. The US department of defense approves the use of iOS6. Back in 2013, it was reported 470,000 Blackberry devices and just 41,000 Apple mobile devices in use by the DOD so this approval was a major win for the Apple.
In 2013, we saw the focus on the business continue to be a significant part of the iOS release. Some features include find my phone, Touch ID, per-app VPNs, improved MDM services, and more.
iOS8 includes apple health, improvements in messages and photos, swift development language, public beta release, and more.
iOS9 update has the control over the home screen and the ability to the blacklist apps. These tools give the business more control over the devices they issue so that the focus is on work and not the play.
iOS 10 is more focused on the enterprise market with the further integration of business services into the OS. For instance, the IT firm can now have calls route to both iPhone and desk phone. This gives the opportunity to choose where to answer the call while also have a consolidated record of calls.
For businesses, it becomes critical to keep supporting their iOS Apps for all versions and upgrades of iOS. One should always consult a professional iOS Apps Development Company to achieve desired results.