Business iPhone, What did happen!

Well it’s not here yet, but, from late June, iPhone v2 will be a big seller to the glass box brigade.

Running through my previous guess list…

1. SME and corporate tariffs

I would still expect some new tariffs from O2 but as of tonight, the 6th of March, only AT&T has announced different tariffs for corporate data.

Corporate plus points 2 out of 10 for the US, ? out of 10 for O2

2. Security

Mostly good news is that remote device erasure is present.

Whether this covers SIM swaps and remote reporting is unclear.

Better WiFi security, VPN and authentication support are also included, but apparently no device encryption.

Some compensation is offered by offering centralised security policy enforcement.

Still the press will have a field day if a banker or government official loses an iPhone holding unencrypted data of millions of customers or citizens.

Corporate plus points 7 out of 10

3. Applications
Excellent news. By licensing ActiveSync Apple can now provide a service equivalent to DataViz and Microsoft’s own direct push client.

I use DataViz on UIQ and it performs admirably, supporting contacts (local and global) and calendars and, on S60 platforms, inbox sub folders.

Apple’s will I’m sure be just as effective.

Also by supporting third party paid for applications Apple has vastly extended the iPhone’s usefulness.

There is also a desire on Apple’s part to support bespoke corporate applications, which in my experience will move the iPhone to centre stage within many company mobility strategies.

Corporate plus points 9 out of 10

4. Control and asset management
Limited good news here; centralised management for security & deployment will be available.

Unfortunately it requires a data connection rather than defaulting to SMS.

Worse still, it requires the user to do something which is not a good idea for mass deployment. I also would have liked to have seen forced configuration and update of applications and hardware settings.

Corporate plus points 4 out of 10 but could have been higher.

5. Hardware flexibility and interfacing
No news here, which is bad news. Perhaps there are unannounced feature for v2.

Corporate plus points 0 out of 10

So instead of a quarter cocked corporate solution, it’s almost spot on.

IT departments will now have a device that, on the whole is better than a BlackBerry and has all the right ingredients for both users and IT staff alike. A resounding success in my book.

So will I buy an iPhone. No. For myself, I can’t quite lower my sight from HSPA down to EDGE, but it’s mightily tempting.