It seems both Apple and RIM are stealing plays from each other's playbook, with the consumer-friendly iPhone taking a crack at the enterprise, and the BlackBerry looking to add more "fun features" to give enterprise users something other than e-mail to toy around with.
As an iPhone user, I welcome any potential feature that may make using it for work more appealing. After all, how many YouTube clips can one man watch in a day? Surely this sleek device will continue to find a home in the hands of business users.
Well, that depends on who you ask.
eWEEK's Roy Mark in this interesting article quotes The 451 Group analyst Tony Rizzo on the battle between Apple and RIM. Rizzo gives RIM the upper hand, saying, "...While Apple, Nokia, Motorola and now HTC Corp continue to compete on enterprise hardware designs, they cannot stack up to RIM in terms of the enterprise ecosystems RIM has in place...This remains a crucial difference that will make competition here almost meaningless."
So no matter what Apple has in mind for enterprise users, it's no competition for RIM? That's like dismissing Apple when the company opened its first Apple Store.
RIM may have the upper hand now as far as the enterprise goes, but Apple has a way of whittling away at a company's flagship product -- in this case, the BlackBerry.
Apple's success in the enterprise will come down to a matter of taste, in my view, and its ability to put its security safeguards where its business users are.
To compare these devices to the stereotypical business users they both seek (and already have), one is the no-nonsense, buttoned-down exec who's looking to loosen the tie, maybe even forego that American flag lapel pin and add a Busta Rhymes' ringtone; the other is perhaps a too-sure-of-himself millennial who's so cool he listens to bands that don't even exist yet (on his iPhone, of course) -- and he's looking to show that he's more than just all surface (with a touch screen) and no substance.
Let the games begin.