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IBM And Apple Launch 100th MobileFirst For iOS App

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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IBM and Apple’s enterprise partnership continues, with Watson integration and iPad Pro apps in the pipeline

IBM has co-developed its 100th MobileFirst for iOS application with Apple and says the future is bright for the partnership, which will expand its scope to include dedicated iPad Pro apps, IBM Watson integration and the launch suites of applications for businesses across several industries.

The two firms joined forces in July last year, agreeing a wide-ranging relationship that has seen IBM will bring its cloud, analytics and mobile management services to iOS, and supply customers with iPhones and iPads running industry-specific applications.

IBM MobileFirst for iOS

Apple IBMThe first industry-specific MobileFirst application was launched last December and Air Canada, Coca-Cola and Vodafone are among the firms using the fruits of the partnership. IBM says the apps are being used across 14 industries and 65 professions at present.

“Our apps — which currently represent an exclusive level of business value — are evolving to deliver cognitive capability that refines insights to the most relevant information, enhancing the quality of decision making,” said Fred Balboni, general manager Apple partnership, IBM. “Marrying the simplicity of Apple’s product design with IBM’s unmatched security, analytic and cognitive expertise is the leading edge of mobile-led business transformation.”

IBM and Apple are now looking at new industries, such as consumer products, automotive and chemcials, and will integrate the cognitive abilities of IBM Watson over time, allowing applications to adapt to their users’ needs. There will also be iPad Pro applications that take advantage of the larger screen, more powerful hardware and multitasking abilities, along with the Apple Pencil stylus.

For Apple, the deal is an important pillar of its strategy to boost its presence in the enterprise amid fears the market for mobile devices in developed markets is saturating. CEO Tim Cook has said his company’s business ambitions are “not a hobby” and that is vision could transform enterprise mobility.

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