updated 10:50 pm EDT, Mon April 13, 2009
Forrester supports iPhone
In a drastic reversal from its previous position, Forrester Research has released a new report detailing reasons for businesses to adopt the iPhone. "The iPhone’s intuitive interface, superior browsing experience, and rapidly evolving developer tool kit make content-centric applications far more appealing on an iPhone than on a BlackBerry or Windows Mobile device," the report reads.
The analysis suggests that employees are attracted to the iPhone, as "consumer IT is often better than enterprise IT" and it is sometimes sensible to provide a choice between tools. Apple's handset is also said to promote collaboration, compared with other products. "The Internet feels natural on an iPhone and a like a chore on a BlackBerry," the report observes.
Along with usability, iPhone users allegedly require less direction. Forrester gathered information from three companies that use the handset for their operations. Kraft Foods, Oracle and Amylin Pharmaceuticals all set up wikis for employees to support each other. "Our early adopters sometimes teach things we’d rather our iPhone users not know, but overall they provide better support than we can," said one company.
Another business claimed the iPhone actually offered a cost savings compared to other devices, with AT&T consumer plans that were cheaper than business plans from other carriers.
Forrester also referenced a number of prohibitive factors, including the limited availability of management tools and features such as copy-and-paste. The upcoming iPhone 3.0 operating system will address many of the issues, with copy-and-paste support and push notification.
The company will also allow subscription-based models for app purchases, which could lure more developers to create enterprise apps. Additionally, the OS should provide customers with options to disable the camera or encrypt backup files.
Late last year, a J.D. Power and Associates report claimed the iPhone achieved the top spot in a customer satisfaction survey targeted at business users of smartphones. Apple's high score was attributed mostly to strengths in the ease-of-use, design and feature criteria. [via Fortune]