Apple and IBM join forces to push iOS in enterprise

Apple + IBM

Apple and IBM announced yesterday that the two companies will be joining forces in a new partnership to “transform enterprise mobility”. In a move that aims to combine IBM’s enterprise nouse and Apple’s device and user experience savvy, the partnership includes industry-specific solutions like dedicated apps for iPhone and iPad, cloud services optimized for iOS, new AppleCare for enterprise, and other packaged services from IBM.

The new IBM MobileFirst for iOS solutions will be built in an exclusive collaboration that draws on the distinct strengths of each company: IBM’s big data and analytics capabilities, with the power of more than 100,000 IBM industry and domain consultants and software developers behind it, fused with Apple’s legendary consumer experience, hardware and software integration and developer platform. The combination will create apps that can transform specific aspects of how businesses and employees work using iPhone and iPad, allowing companies to achieve new levels of efficiency, effectiveness and customer satisfaction—faster and easier than ever before.

In a joint press release, Apple CEO Tim Cook states the following:

“iPhone and iPad are the best mobile devices in the world and have transformed the way people work with over 98 percent of the Fortune 500 and over 92 percent of the Global 500 using iOS devices in their business today. For the first time ever we’re putting IBM’s renowned big data analytics at iOS users’ fingertips, which opens up a large market opportunity for Apple. This is a radical step for enterprise and something that only Apple and IBM can deliver”

As well as releasing a (lengthy) joint press release, Cook and IBM CEO Ginny Rometty sat down with a number of media outlets to discuss the deal. In an interview with Re/code, Rometty described the two companies as leaders in their fields:

“We both think of each other as the gold standard. … We really do get to remake professions and unlock value that companies don’t yet have. … We have a complementary set of assets that go into the deployment. We have the big data, the analytics capabilities, the integration work, the cloud. But they have the device, the development environment, the usability. So that’s why we work so well together.”

In a video interview with CNBC’s Josh Liptin, the two CEOs shed more light on the partnership:

Further, Mark Gurman of 9to5Mac has gotten his hands on an internal memo from Cook to Apple employees in which he explains the reasoning for the deal and how excited he is to “see it take off”. Read the full memo below:


Today, we announced a groundbreaking new partnership with IBM that will enable enterprises to put the power of big data analytics at their employees‘ fingertips on their iOS device. This exclusive global partnership brings together Apple‘s legendary ease-of-use and integrated hardware and software with IBM’s unmatched industry depth, enterprise software and expertise in big data analytics.

It also builds on the incredible momentum in Apple’s enterprise business. iPhone and iPad can be found in 98% of the Fortune 500. People love to use iOS devices and Apple delivers the things companies need most—security and scalable deployment along with a powerful platform for apps. With this announcement, we’re now putting IBM‘s renowned big data analytics at iOS users‘ fingertips, which opens up a large market opportunity for Apple. This is a radical step for enterprise and something only Apple and IBM can deliver.

IBM is known for helping customers leverage big data and analytics to make their businesses run better. With over 100,000 consultants and sales professionals, they also have massive scale and global reach. IBM‘s sales and consulting teams will also be selling iPad, iPhone and AppleCare for Enterprise as part of the partnership.

This partnership brings together the best of both companies. It’s great news for Apple, IBM and for enterprise customers worldwide and I’m really excited to see it take off.


For more on the Apple and IBM partnership, check out the full press release over at Apple’s site and make sure to visit the dedicated IBM MobileFirst website.

Image via MacStories.

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