We've talked a lot about how the iPad is making Apple some space in the enterprise. On launch, critics slammed the device for neither being fit for enterprise use nor for use as a netbook replacement. They were wrong. With iOS 4.2 the iPad is an even better fit for business. I've taken a short look at what's coming inside the upgrade, and identified five high-level iPad apps for business users.
Apple recently confirmed 65% of Fortune 100 firms are already using the tablet, or at least trialling its use. This is just part of its powerful market share -- if iPad were counted as a PC, Apple would be the biggest US PC maker, bar none...
"I don't know about you, but I've never seen an adoption like this in my life in enterprise," said Apple Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook last month. "Enterprise is historically much slower moving on adoption."look forward to iPad 2.0, existing iPad owners can look forward to some interesting enhancements once iOS 4.2 reaches the iPad this month, not least an extremely simple print and audio streaming feature, and lots of additional improvements:
With the new software upgrade, iPad sure is looking more and more like a netbook replacement (install an app called Desktop if you want a more productive iPad), so what apps exist for business users?
Cortado Corporate Server for iPad
Developed by ThinPrint, this solution extends the corporate network and desktop to the iPad, offering complete independence from location-bound workplaces. Essentially it is a secure VPN through which a user can access centrally-stored files and other resources, complete with user rights and security protection, and get to access pretty much anything they can on their corporate desktop from wherever they happen to be at the time. Additional features include:
Desktop Connect ($14.99) is another fantastic tool for enterprise users. It lets you connect to any computer from anywhere in the world -- you get to view and control Windows, Mac OSX and Linux computers. This is a complete desktop experience via your iPad. It supports VNC and Microsoft Remote Desktop. Communications are protected by 128-bit encryption. Additional features include:
WebEx for iPad
If your company goes in for WebEx meetings, then you'll be pleased to learn there's a free app that lets you join in these meetings using your iPad. This is a complete experience, you can share information and chat -- if you have a WebEx account you can even initiate a meeting. Additional features include:
Worried about security? Then you'll need MobileIron's Sentry software (the app is free). Using this, administrators with a MobileIron Sentry account can get a tight grip on security on an iPad, that's because the appdelivers real-time monitoring and response capabilities including:
Still worried about security? Then try Safe. This allows you to store and organise your sensitive data on your iPad -- and it is all encrypted with 256-bit AES security. This is handy because it means those incredibly secret company documents can be kept completely safe while you travel with your iPad. Lose your iPad and whoever has it will be hard-pressed getting at your data.
The app also lets you categorise all your bits and pieces of information, so credit card details can be kept separate from user accounts, for example. Additional features include: