IBM and Apple unveil first wave of co-developed business apps

iOS apps tailored for iPads and iPhones

Apple and IBM have lifted the lid on the first wave of business apps co-developed by the two companies.

The tech giants set tongues wagging back in July by announcing plans to combine the iPhone maker's hardware with IBM's software and services experitse.

The new IBM MobileFirst for iOS apps have been tailored for iPad and iPhone users and are available to enterprise customers in a number of industries - from banking and retail to insurance, financial services and telecommunications - in addition to governments and airlines.

There are 10 apps in the new portfolio covering a range of industries - from travel to finance and retail. According to Apple, they can be easily deployed, managed and upgraded via the cloud and data is secured at the back end and on the device.

Clients using the two apps include Citi Air Canada, Sprint and Barnote.

Ready for action

Among the new apps detailed are:

  • Plan Flight (Travel and Transportation) addresses the major expense of all airlines—fuel—permitting pilots to view flight schedules, flight plans, and crew manifests ahead of time, report issues in-flight to ground crews, and make more informed decisions about discretionary fuel.
  • Advise & Grow (Banking and Financial Markets) puts bankers on premise with their small business clients, with secure authorization to access client profiles and competitive analyses, gather analytics-driven insights to make personalized recommendations, and complete secure transactions.
  • Trusted Advice (Banking and Financial Markets) allows advisors to access and manage client portfolios, gain insight from powerful predictive analytics—in the client's kitchen or at the local coffee shop, rather than the advisor's office—with full ability to test recommendations with sophisticated modeling tools all the way to complete, secure transactions.
  • Sales Assist (Retail) enables associates to connect with customer profiles, make suggestions based on previous purchases and current selections, check inventory, locate items in-store, and ship out-of-store items.
  • Expert Tech (Telecommunications) taps into native iOS capabilities including FaceTime® for easy access to expertise and location services for route optimization to deliver superior on-site service, more effective issue resolution and productivity as well as improved customer satisfaction.

In November, Apple and IBM announced plans to offer a new support service as part of the enterprise app development partnership. Called AppleCare for Enterprise, the service offers 24/7 IT support for all Apple hardware and operating systems.

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