Friday, November 9

iPhone Connects Again With Business

By The VAR Guy 8 comments

Sorry if The VAR Guy has been a bit distracted lately. It seems he can’t stop playing with his iPhone. Business email. B2B website browsing. Business voicemail. Hmmm. Who says the iPhone is just for consumers? Certainly not The VAR Guy, who sees more and more business apps moving to the device. The latest example is an emergency notification system from MIR3.

Working within Apple’s mobile Safari Web browser, MIR3’s software allows corporate executives and IT administrators to generate emergency notifications using the iPhone. Prime customers will likely include universities that want to get alerts out to students, government agencies and other organizations that need rock-solid contingency plans.

Other online application providers have embraced the iPhone as well. For instance, Skyytek is using the iPhone to access NetSuite applications. And Apple in February will introduce an iPhone software development kit that brings even more business apps to the device.

Apple and business. Hmmm. Why do so many skeptics have trouble linking those two terms together?

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Comments (8)

  1. You are kidding me right? Apple and ATT have made this product the futhurest thing from Business friendly. Lets start with the number one fact a Business CAN NOT activate a iphone. It can only be on a personnal account with a SSN. Second, it CAN NOT be on a plan with any other phone. So there are no pools of minutes and no roll over minutes if you happen to be a old cingular customer. It could be a great tool for business but if you can not put it on your business account it is WORTHLESS.

    Ryan, November 9th, 2007 at 12:57 pm #
  2. Ryan - You’re kidding right??
    “it CAN NOT be on a plan with any other phone. So there are no pools of minutes and no roll over minutes if you happen to be a old cingular customer.”
    This is completely FALSE - My iPhone is on my family plan with rollover minutes.
    “It could be a great tool for business but if you can not put it on your business account it is WORTHLESS.”
    Maybe for your business it is worthless, but since I run my business differently than you do, it works GREAT for my business.
    The most likely truth of the matter is that Apple doesn’t allow it to be setup on a business account has to do with 2 things. One, it would require changing how the iphone activation is setup, since you are required to know things about the account that a fortune 500 company employee would have no way of figuring out, like what is the account number for the business account. Second reason is more likely due to the fact that it isn’t ready for working with an exchange server and would require businesses to open ports and generally make changes with their servers to accommodate the iphone and apple is admitting that it isn’t ready to do that yet.
    Please get your facts straight and stop assuming that you have any clue how other businesses work.
    If I worked for a larger company who wanted to pay for my phone, I’d tell them to just pay me back for my iphone and I’d buy it myself. For my business, it works GREAT.

    Mike, November 9th, 2007 at 1:13 pm #
  3. Ryan, I am an existing at&t customer and I registered my iPhone under my family plan which included it under my pool of minutes and roll-over minutes.

    I do agree it’s not yet ready for business. I for one returned the iPhone when I realized I couldn’t remotely access my clients computers using logmein.com

    Marnin, November 9th, 2007 at 1:19 pm #
  4. Is the iPhone perfect for business? Nope. Lots of enterprises pushing back because of email concerns.

    However, organizations such as Disney are testing the iPhone because executives are buying them on their own.

    Basically, consumers who are influential business executives are going to carry the iPhone into the enterprise. Oh, and so is the college class of 2008, and 2009 and…

    CIOs better get ready.

    The VAR Guy, November 9th, 2007 at 1:58 pm #
  5. You can only use pool minutes on an exisiting Family account but you have to add the Iphone data plan on to it. Please check https://www.wireless.att.com/business/iphone/plan_terms.pdf. You CAN NOT have any corp or business discounts on the phone. The phone has to be activated under a SSN and then the bill can be attached to a business account to come at the same time with your other bill. There is NO pooling of minutes for the iphone on a business or corp account. I have been there and done that and have a t-shirt.

    Ryan, November 9th, 2007 at 3:11 pm #
  6. My small business purchased 5 iPhones today. Found we couldn’t switch our business plan over to them. Tomorrow, we’ll be returning 5 iPhones to the Apple store.

    How does that math work with Apple?

    steve, December 28th, 2007 at 5:57 pm #
  7. Best Christmas present ever… my new iPhone. Spent the weekend attempting to activate it. Can’t do it - it’s a business account. I talked to the Apple rep at the store, said it was for a business account, he said nothing and sold it to me anyway. My mistake for assuming Apple gave a crap about their customers. Goodbye Apple, goodbye AT&T. BTW, you made the person who saved for months to buy me this awesome present, cry. Screw you for that, and for ruining my holiday.

    george faulkner, December 30th, 2007 at 10:24 pm #
  8. I have heard from AT&T business center that AT&T and Apple are currently negotiating a possible deal for the sale of iphones to ATT business customers. Could happen in a month or two, but no guarantees. Let’s face it, the current restriction to consumer accounts is absolutely idiotic and the companies have to realize that by now. A change is hopefully on the horizon.

    spalaw, January 2nd, 2008 at 5:47 pm #

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