3 Hidden Gems Your Enterprise Will Love About iOS 8

by: | Jun 5, 2014

There’s been a lot of buzz around iOS 8’s improvements and new features — and much of the hype centers on the individual user experience. But what does it all mean for enterprise mobile solutions?

At ArcTouch, we’ve had a few watercooler debates and did some follow-up research — which led us to these three delightful gems we think will have an impact on enterprise mobility and enterprise app development.

External Storage, But Not Exactly How You Think

CloudKit has captured a lot of attention for having capabilities as a full backend solution to manage databases, push notifications and file storage. In reality, it’s just a small step forward for the APIs to allow the transfer of data between devices and users.

It doesn’t offer cloud computing for developers to implement logic on the server. It provides simple database storage for large amounts of data, allowing the developer to query that data — but that data is still isolated within iCloud, accessible only through iOS and Mac OS X native apps. There’s no multi-platform solution that would allow developers to feed data from the outside — a deal-breaker for an enterprise that needs to support a broad range of platforms.

However, external storage providers can now integrate their solutions with iOS 8.  Companies like Box, already popular in the enterprise space, will be able to deliver deeper integration with iOS 8, improving the cross-platform capabilities complex organizations really need.

VoIP Without the “Oy!”

The ability to make and receive iPhone calls from the Mac is a compelling consumer feature — but it also could be a way to get VoIP-like capabilities for businesses of all sizes.

Anyone who has worked in a multi-office environment — especially with a mobile workforce — has probably had some bad experiences with voice carriers and integration with data systems. Getting one vendor to provide reliable phone services across the country to everyone is virtually impossible.

Enter iOS 8 and OS X Yosemite: With this the ability to take iPhone calls at your desk via your computer, along with a growing market of bluetooth-based speakerphones, you can expect that some companies will start dropping VoIP or PBX-based phone systems entirely. Employees have one phone (an iPhone) that becomes their voice communications hub — saving as much as $50 per person in “landline” services,  not to mention hardware, including expensive PoE switches to power VoIP systems.

Reducing Awkward Silence in Meetings

For anyone who meets with clients regularly, relying on another company’s network connection to demo is fraught with peril.

As MacDailyNews reported, AirPlay 8 now includes the ability to connect directly to a Apple TV — a peer-to-peer connection — without requiring a connection to the host network first. This could reduce the amount of awkward silence in meetings, while fumbling for cables and connections. It may not make meetings more productive, but certainly less stressful.

What Do You Think iOS 8 Means for the Mobile Enterprise?

PC Magazine, Business Insider and others have chimed in on iOS 8 and potential impact on enterprise mobility. But how do you think iOS 8 will change your business? We’d love to know.