Remember when Apple was only considered the creative and artistic brand of computers and software, and PCs were what the business community stuck with? Over the last several years, these lines have become mush less clearly demarcated, and they are about to be blurred even more. Apple has crossed over into the business world in a big way, an will probably continue to do so as a new portfolio of apps, created in conjunction with IBM, is rolled out over the coming weeks, months, and years.
I read an article in the New York Times today that summarized what these new apps are all about very nicely (“Apple and IBM Introduce First Offerings in Line of Mobile Apps for Businesses”). Until now, the article says, “business software for mobile devices has typically amounted to adding a smartphone or tablet interface to traditional business software….” But now that smartphones and iPads (or other tablets) are so prevalent in every industry and virtually everyone has them, it makes more sense to create business apps for these devices directly, and that is just what Apple and IBM have done.
The way the article summarizes how one of the newly developed apps will be used in the airline industry shows how, assuming everything goes according to plan, they will facilitate participation in various industries for everyone involved, in this case for everyone from the pilot to the ground crew to the passengers. As the article puts it, “For airlines, for example, one app allows pilots to pull together information on flight plans, schedules and weather conditions and report issues to ground crews for in-flight fuel-saving decisions. Another enables flight crews to view information on trip progress and to rebook flights en route for travelers likely to miss their scheduled connections.”
So if we see analogous situations in other industries as well, everyone involved in a given industry, including consumers, will benefit from the increased efficiency that will come along with these apps.