iPhone in Enterprise: Native Microsoft Exchange Support and lots more coming in the next iPhone Firmware update

The details of iPhone in enterprise are finally out at the much awaited iPhone SDK’s special event today at Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino.

Folks at Apple have been humble enough to admit that the iPhone has been watershed event in mobile computing for corporations however they are looking to address this with some great entriprise features such as Native Microsoft Exchange support, push email and contacts, Enterprise class Wi-Fi (WPA2 / 802.1x), Cisco IPsec VPN support and lots more.

One of the features that business users really missed in the iPhone is support for Native Microsoft Exchange support, Apple is looking to address this by licensing ActiveSync for the iPhone.

However, the Native Microsoft Exchange functionality does not need a new app but will be built into the iPhone’s current Mail client, and accessible through a new preset option just like current preset options for Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, etc.

In addition to the Native Microsoft Exchange support, Apple plans to introduce the following Enterprise features in the next iPhone firmware update:

  • Native Microsoft Exchange support
  • Push email and contacts
  • Global Address list
  • Cisco IPsec VPN
  • Certificates and Identities
  • Enterprise Class Wi-Fi (WPA2 / 802.1x)
  • Enforced Security Policies
  • Device Configuration
  • Remote wipe

Apple will be releasing all this in the next release of iPhone firmware update. It will be interesting to see how many mobile phones already support all of the above features, I am sure there won’t be many out there that fit the bill.

Apple is hoping that the new features will make the iPhone the best mobile device ever in the enterprise. I would tend to agree as I believe with these features the next iPhone firmware update will indeed be a game changer for mobile devices in the enterprise. Way to go Apple!

Let me know your thoughts.

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