Apple partners with Cisco to boost enterprise business

1 Sep 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Apple and Cisco Team Up on iPhone and iPad Sales.

The partnership, announced Monday, is aimed at helping Apple’s mobile devices communicate more effectively on corporate networks where Cisco gear is widely used, the companies said.“Through this engineering and go-to-market partnership, we’re offering our joint customers the ability to seamlessly extend that awesome Cisco environment to their favorite iOS devices. On Monday, the two companies announced an alliance to ensure that corporate Internet connections relying on Cisco hardware deliver content quickly and securely to iPhones and iPads.

Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook and Cisco Chairman John Chambers said their firms spent 10 months working on collaboration, which they outlined to thousands of Cisco sales representatives Monday at a gathering in Las Vegas. For Apple, it’s the second recently struck partnership with a former foe aimed at boosting sales to businesses, which traditionally have steered toward BlackBerry and Microsoft devices. Cisco, which has an office in downtown Toronto, provides products and services that connect companies to the Internet as well as communications tools for virtual conferences and meetings. Cisco customers could be affected in several ways: An employee in the office using an iPhone to video-conference a colleague abroad automatically would get a faster Internet connection than someone streaming a game on ESPN.com. IPad sales have fallen for six straight quarters; revenue from iPads declined 24% in the nine months ended June 27, compared with the same period a year earlier.

Cisco will also develop products specifically for Apple’s operating system. “iPhone and iPad have become essential tools for the modern workforce and are changing the way work gets done. And several Cisco apps, such as the collaboration tool Spark, will run smoother on Apple devices. “What makes this new partnership unique is that our engineering teams are innovating together to build joint solutions that our sales teams and partners will take jointly to our customers,” Cisco Chief Executive Chuck Robbins said in a blog post.

Chambers, who leaned heavily on acquisitions in turning Cisco into the biggest supplier of networking equipment, said the Apple deal underscores a shift to alliances for the biggest industry players. That’s in part why technology experts who closely follow Apple expect the company to soon release a larger-screened iPad that would be better-suited for completing work tasks. One of the byproducts of the Apple-Cisco partnership will be the creation of a so-called “fast lane” for iOS devices that prioritizes wireless and Web connections of critical business applications, the companies said. Another issue, they said, is that many workers now have their phone address books on their iPhones rather than on their work desk phones, which may be supplied by Cisco. Apple, now the world’s most valuable company, struggled in the PC era to establish a presence in what is now a $2 trillion annual market for corporate technology spending.

Apple is playing matchmaker to help companies bundle apps together for small businesses—coupling, for example, a digital cash-register app with a workplace scheduling app.

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