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Everyday I talk to companies that are starting down a path, away from the old Windows centric paradigm, to do something "different".  Sometimes that is a fringe purchase of a new Mac here or there (see the CEO with a Macbook Air); sometimes it is a commitment to use iWork or "Open Office" instead of of MSFT Office; sometimes this is wholesale "switching".  My favorite is the company that makes the decision to go all Macs, and then says "OK, now, what kind of software runs on these things?" 

For me, here, the Enterprise is business.  Companies large and small.  I am facinated by and interested in the use of Apple products in any kind of business.

How Apple products are are faring in the Enterprise is a great topic of discussion. I am watching companies providing solutions (I work for one), and observing how Apple talks to the Enterpise.

Entries in iPad (3)


iPads Hot in Business Says Brian Blair (of Wedge Partners)

There are many who get great encouragement from any Apple movement in business.   I try to pay attention to any sign which could indicate a strategy.  Apple however, continues to prove that if they go after the end user, the end user will drag their Apple devices into work.  The Apple the "Enteprise Strategy" seems to work.  

However, when financial analysts like Brian Blair of Wedge Partners points to real financial results from Apple in the Enteprise, it's worth noting.  In a recent interview Brian notes that robust iPad sales is partly attributable to more iPads in use, in business.  Not surprisingly, iPads are taking the place of Netbooks and even Laptops.

I like that momentum.


The iPad's Market (not REALLY newly invented)

I am continuing to closely follow the editorial around the iPad.  It's so interesting to me that the hype is NOT settling down. How are we ever going to be able to wait for March and April??

I am especially interested in those arguments that have the iPad failing to revolutionize the Tablet category.  Clearly, with expectations SO thru the roof, there is plenty of room from even the ultimate fan-boy to be at least a little disppointed.  But it's a little early to declare success/failure on changing this market. Is this really a NEW market?  Most would agree that Apple has been tremendously successful in taking on an existing market and game-changing it. It's been that way since the orginal Mac, but think about the latest successful market trumps: Music/media players, phones, even laptops. I have heard Dvorak and others negate the potential of the "tablet" market.  The grumbling is that this "space" doesn't exist because no one needs these things, and even Apple cannot just create a market that doesn't exist.

I disagree.  I believe this market does exist, it is burgeoning, and it would be a real market, even with out Apple jumping in.  It's the Kindle market.  I see more Kindles in the wild every day.  My parents use one!  Remember the Nook sales before the holidays? And all those e-readers announced at CES?  

And then there is the Netbook. Come on, who doesn't agree with Steve Jobs that these Netbooks suck? But you know, if you want some internet, and you need to type, and you have to deal with your company's spreadsheets, you have to have a device that is more than phone, and certainly more than an e-reader. It sure is nice to be able to lug something around that smaller and lighter than a full laptop.

I actually see here market within the Market Steve pointed out.  Apple has even come in between their own "middle ground" not just in between phones and laptops (see pic above), it's in between Kindle's and other Tablet PC's.  The iPad will kill Kindle-type devices, and shave off the wasted overhead of under-performing Netbooks, making a device that will do what MANY, MANY people want the device to do.

Lets tie back to the enterpise. After all, we are trying to put Apple technology in the enteprise here, right?  Think about the executive, dragged into technology. That executive was forced to use first a laptop, and then the Blackberry. Those are the guys (& women) that are EMBRACING Apple technolgy.  You see them at the airport, with their Macbook pros, with their iPhones.  They are also that CEO that use a Mac, while their entire business is run on Windows.

THATS the way into the Enterprise (see my trojan horse post). This takes it to another level. They have a briefcase, slide the iPad in there.  Now there is email, which is really what they want.  But also internet (let's check the stock portfolio). There is content (back episodes of Lost), and music.  The one missing component that this modernizing exec needed on his/her iPhone (besides a screen that wouldn't hurt the eyes) is a tool for writing memos, maybe doing a few quick things on a spread sheet.  COVERED. And hey, got to share with the rest of the company, export to the MSFT formats .xls, .doc.  COVERED.

The reviews and editorials will say what they must to draw eyeballs. Time will tell how the market will respond.  As is the usual case with Apple, there is no apparent "Enterprise Strategy" for the iPad. But I am sure we will see the Enteprise story unfold. Top Down.  Stay tuned.


iPad is here (well, in 60-90 days anyway)

It's here. It's done.  It's been announced. The cat is out of the bag. And now we know what the thing is. iPad.  We have heard Steve's vision.  Here is what I have to say about it.  I was expecting more (I am still expecting more). As an Apple/Mac over-enthusiast, I say, this looks like a nice Gen 1. So nice that I cannot wait for Gen 2. I won't.  I will be jumping in now. Can I order now Apple?  Now?  How about now?

I have been an Apple/Mac junkie since the original Mac back in the 80's. I was back and forth with DOS and Mac and Windows and Mac in the 90's. The iPod brought me squarely back in the fold in '01, but my Apple/Mac fanaticism really exploded with the iPhone. The Mac was my computer back 2007. I also had a separate phone, PDA, and iPod.  Once it was all the iPhone, it all came together.  My great computing and music experience were now my everything, with me all the time.  Over the next few years, all Windows computers in my life were replaced by Macs. Today, I have to admit, I am pretty committed. 

I was at Macworld when the iPhone was announced. It was impressive. It was obvious that it would be a big for the Mac faithful.  It wasn't so clear that it would burst out beyond the Macheads. It wasn't a no-brainer for me.  I had a long term relationship invested in my Palm/Treo. I didn't NEED a replacement. Maybe, when my contract ran out, but let's not get drastic.  But then I touched it. I held it. That changed everything. I couldn't put it down. And once I had one, and actually used it, suddenly it was in the middle of my life, my Apple experience with me all the time. The App Store put it over the top.  The iPhone/Mac combo continues to change everything for me, as it continues to evolve.  I see the iPad as that next evolution.

I read a great article by Troy Jenson in Seeking Alpha on the iPad and the rush to early conclusions on the the new wonder i-Product from Apple. The post is loaded with valid comparisons of the iPad announcement to the iPhone announcement back in 2007.  Even as a fan-boy back then, I did not see the potential. I did not understand. Neither did plenty of others.  I had forgotten all the haters back then, all of the panning. The haters are certainly still around, waiting for the iPad to fail.  Even those eagerly waiting for the iPad found some things to be disapointed with.

Even though it didn't have everything I wanted or predicted (yet), I feel good about it.  I want it. I know it will continue to get better.  Maybe even before the 60 to 90 days are up. More importantly, I am confident it will continue to evolve my overall Apple/Mac experience. I am VERY eager to see how this device works it's way into the Enterprise. I know it will.  More on the iPad in the Enterprise, later.  Now Apple?  Now are you ready for my money? Now?