Jul 19, 2014 01:33 AM EDT
Tech behemoths Apple and IBM announced a partnership Tuesday that will bring the two companies together with the aim of creating new enterprise solutions for business users.
The announcement, while warmly received around the technosphere, puts a kink in BlackBerry's rebound plans. The once-popular smartphone manufacturer (remember Crackberrys?) has lost most of its market share to Apple's iPhones and the plethora of Android handsets and has chosen to refocus on providing software services to businesses. Apple and IBM's entry into the enterprise market has sent BlackBerry shares tumbling downward after a more than 50 percent gain this year.
"You've got quite a few bigger enterprise entities now vying in the space where BlackBerry dominated," Amitabh Passi, a San Francisco-based analyst at UBS Securities LLC, told Bloomberg over the phone. "It changes the competitive dynamic."
The Apple-IBM partnership focuses mainly on iOS services (read: iPhones and iPads). But don't worry: Because of the nature of the Apple ecosystem, plenty of features should carry over and interact with Mac OS X. IBM will also being exclusively selling iPhones and iPads that are tailor made for business users.
A joint press release on the matter highlights four key results of the alliance:
1) A new class of more than 100 industry-specific enterprise solutions including native apps, developed exclusively from the ground up, for iPhone and iPad.
2) Unique IBM cloud services optimized for iOS, including device management, security, analytics and mobile integration.
3) New AppleCare® service and support offering tailored to the needs of the enterprise.
4) New packaged offerings from IBM for device activation, supply and management.
Mobile enterprise solutions have become increasingly important as a large part of the world's workforce begins to adopt smartphones. The Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) movement has companies allowing employees to access business accounts and conduct devices via their personal smartphones or tablets. Of course, in order for the firm to feel safe with company data on a personal device, the proper enterprise solutions need to be place, such as Samsung's KNOX suite.
"Mobility -- combined with the phenomena of data and cloud -- is transforming business and our industry in historic ways, allowing people to re-imagine work, industries and professions," said IBM chief executive and president Ginni Rometty.
"This alliance with Apple will build on our momentum in bringing these innovations to our clients globally, and leverages IBM's leadership in analytics, cloud, software and services," Rometty said. "We are delighted to be teaming with Apple, whose innovations have transformed our lives in ways we take for granted, but can't imagine living without. Our alliance will bring the same kind of transformation to the way people work, industries operate and companies perform."
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