Friday, February 05, 2010

The iPad Factor – Impact on Consumer and Enterprise Mobility

Vinay Shukla analyses the impact of iPad

Anyone would fall in love with iPad, Apple’s new innovation, when it was announced on Jan 27th. I was even more excited to see that Steve Jobs chose one of our partner application ("Seven Wonders") for demonstration while launch. Endeavour is New7Wonders mobility partner and assists N7W in enhancing its mobile digital marketing space.

Steve Jobs has been dreaming about tablet device for long time now and I think this is the right time to launch it because the entire ecosystem for this device is ready. Why? According to Tal Kerret Group, 65 percent of the 2 billion apps downloaded from Appstore are games. Due to high retention rate of gaming applications on iPhone and seemingly demand for e-books applications on Appstore and Kindle, iPad becomes just icing on the cake for already popular iPhone and iPod Touch devices. There is already an infrastructure available for all the 3 powerful features highlighted by Apple e.g. e-books, games (thanks to its LED powered screen!) and rich media. Launch of iBooks opens new opportunities for developers to mobilize rich digital content on iPad. This would drive a demand for music, rich media (audio/video) and messaging applications.

In short, iPad as iPod Touch and iPhone would also be driven by “applications”.

With 10 hours of battery life (good but is that enough as compared to other mobile gadgets in the market?), I see a huge demand among the youth specially students as it provides iWorks, internet, a user friendly keypad.

On enterprise side, everyone was expecting an announcement for new OS release (v4.0) with multitasking capabilities from Apple. Apple wants us to wait! The good thing is that iPad is powered by iPhone OS so any future updates on iPhone would also apply to iPad. This makes enterprises to adapt new device without much hassle from maintenance point of view. Enterprises would have to deal with supporting iPad any way as when it is shipped in 60 days people will start bringing iPad to corporate networks and this would open up demand for its support in corporate infrastructure e.g. mobile device and user management, integration with mobile middleware platforms etc. Boxtone, MobileIron, Good may be rushing to grab the opportunity to become forerunner in this space.

The GPS feature and user friendly bigger interface of iPad particularly opens adaptability in verticals like CPG, healthcare supply chain, retail, inspection and audit, compliance for mobile staff to use this platform as sales force automation tool. Apple has made this simple by announcing accessories e.g. casing, keyboard, dock etc along with iPad.

Apple claims to ship 10m devices by end of this year 2010. How much they succeed we would see in due course!

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