Adam Safire's Blog

Random thoughts about technology

Is the iPad ready for business?

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Apple's iPad has been a huge hit with consumers. Early testing and common sense indicate that it should work very well in the enterprise. The biggest problem facing the device isn’t the device or its functionality, it is the lack of a plan to manage the 3G service and ownership and deployment of apps from a bulk standpoint. This makes business adoption a very manually intensive and non-centralized exercise. Which is okay for a few test users but expanding out to even a dozen would prove very difficult. 

You can use the iPhone configuration utility to setup environmental settings like corporate email, wifi, restrictions and VPN connections. The problem begins when you start to want to purchase apps and the 3G service.

Currently, there is no way to add the pay as you go service to a corporate AT&T plan.  So each users 3G account has to be placed on a month-to-month plan that is tied to a credit card. There is no way currently to add the charges to an existing AT&T account.

On the apps front, I haven’t found a way to install apps without setting up an individual account for each user again secured with a credit card. Controlling app updates and purchasing falls into the hands of the individual user not the company. While users need to have the flexibility to add apps there needs to be a way to monitor and standardize apps across multiple users.     

 

The iPad is a device that holds promise for business users. It is clear that non-business users were the first targets. Apple and AT&T explain the device is still brand new and integration with corporate wireless accounts and app management is in the works. For folks who want an iPad at work that is not fast enough.

 

-AS

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Written by adamsafire

June 15, 2010 at 3:12 am

Posted in Uncategorized

Tagged with , , ,

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