The Top 5 Features of iOS 8 for Enterprise Users
Apple, the iPhone and iOS have all been talked about at great length so far throughout 2014, with excitement and enthusiasm two of the more prevalent emotions associated with the technology giant's new releases.
Upon holding their annual Worldwide Developer Conference earlier in the year, expectations were raised among both the consumer and enterprise communities, with a number of intriguing new features being announced for the impending software and hardware upgrades.
Apple also recently confirmed a formidable alliance with IBM in an attempt to make even more waves in Enterprise Mobility moving forward; a sign of their ambition and intentions for the market.
Following the release of the iPhone 6, iOS 8 has now been officially launced, and we've taken the opportunity to look at five features which are set to make the operating system far more enterprise-friendly.
'Handoff' will introduce the ability to work on tasks across multiple devices, with fluidity and ease, which will improve the ability to efficiently complete work and significantly boost levels of productivity. Being able to transition across phones, laptops and tablets seamlessly will change the way fundamental aspects of work are carried out. Similarly, this continuity can be applied to making and receiving phone calls on any Apple device, which could have an enormous benefit for enterprise users in terms of things like conference calling.
Another useful addition to iOS 8 will present a much easier way of leveraging a smartphone's cellular network to establish an internet connection on another device. This is an obvious boost for employees working from remote locations, especially when travelling, whilst delivering more secure wireless access to the internet.
Security is without question one of, if not the most prominent fear for Enterprise Mobility decision makers and senior IT professionals. To ensure that the new features and capabilities of the iPhone 6 and the iOS 8 are fully embraced by as many users as possible, Apple have increased their focus on security and device management tools to ease the concerns of enterprise IT and system administrators.
IT departments will now have an easier job implementing their MDM policies, along with data and content authorisation on an application-specific level, and will be able to protect their corporate networks on a much more precise and accurate basis across the entire workforce.
Upgrades to iCloud within iOS 8 will be bridging the gap, and placing Apple's document storage and sharing tools on a similar level to more recognised services such as Dropbox.
iCloud Drive will give users free reign over the documents across a wealth of devices, making productivity much easier to sustain when working remotely. Documents will also be able to be saved as individual files or grouped together in folders within an established file structure. This will make the iCloud Drive more similar to an internal corporate network.
The improved iMessage feature within iOS 8 will deliver a number of group messaging abilities which will make professional team projects and business related message threads far easier to facilitate and maintain from virtually any location.
Users will now be able to moderate and control the settings of the group message threads in great detail, as well as being able to share content within the conversation in a much more convenient way. There will also be GPS location sharing to allow meetings to be set up out of the office.
Touch ID API
The Touch ID API is a fasincating concept which could solve a number of security and data problems which derive from Enterprise Mobility. The addition of this API will allow third-party developers to integrate the biometric fingerprint recognition to allow users to access applications and perform certain other tasks in a highly-secure and unique manner, without the worry of compromised passwords.
Of course, this is just scratching the surface of possibilities that the new iOS 8 features will introduce for employees who choose the iPhone as the mobile device they use in the workplace, especially as developers begin to take advantage of the hoard of new APIs available, and will only further pressurise organisations to embrace Apple products within the corporate environment.