Brown’s Bytes – iOS 12 in the Enterprise…

Welcome to Brown’s Bytes! Your weekly insight from Mobliciti’s CTO Andy Brown. Follow #brownsbytes

8th June 2018

As expected Apple announced iOS 12 this week at WWDC 2018.

I thought it would be useful to go through what we know at this early stage about the new features and how they impact the Enterprise.

Hmm…

So far, I’d have to say there isn’t too much to get excited about as an Enterprise admin. While there is quite a bit that is interesting, it’s more aimed at the consumer market.

And that’s to be expected as the major releases of iOS do tend to focus on the consumer features. After all they are often linked to driving the adoption of the next major iPhone release. It’s the minor releases that often tend to contain the interesting stuff for Enterprises.

However, there is one feature that stands out as being of Interest… Group FaceTime

For a while now Enterprises have been challenged by consumer tech being used as Shadow IT. The classic example of this is WhatsApp. How many businesses are effectively running using this in some way? I’d wager an awful lot of them. Staff are often not being malicious about it, but it is often easier to communicate with other team members using a quick WhatsApp Group chat.

Often there will be a policy saying not to do this and possibly a sanctioned internal communications tool that should be used instead such as Skype for Business or Teams from Microsoft. The problem is that the official solution is often seen by the users as inferior to the consumer version. Classic user feedback in these scenarios tends to be something like: “It’s just quicker and easier to use WhatsApp.”

This is potentially the issue that Group FaceTime will now bring to the fore as well. Apple have a strong history with FaceTime for making such a simple and effective tool. It just works.

Many companies often haven’t grasped the nettle of video comms on mobile at all yet. It’s quite possible that there isn’t a sanctioned official channel to be used instead of Group FaceTime.And now consumers will be able to create ad-hoc video conferences quickly and easily from their iPhone… it’s not really a massive leap to see what can happen next.

So, the message this week is a simple one. Keep an eye on the consumer features too – these are often where the new IT headaches (and opportunities) of the future can be found!

We’ve now got iOS 12 beta running in the lab and I can confirm that it’s enrolled successfully on MDM (a good start). We’ll keep you posted with progress on our findings.

In the meantime, if there is anything you would like help with in the world of iOS in the Enterprise then please do get in touch