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Gartner: IT should steer clear of iPhone

updated 10:30 am EDT, Fri June 22, 2007

Gartner on iPhone in IT

Analyst firm Gartner will warn IT managers to avoid integrating the iPhone into their companies, according to an upcoming report timed to arrive alongside the device itself next week. The research group warns that the iPhone is built for personal use rather than the workplace, with most of its e-mail services tailored to individuals and no security measures to guard data on networks or against loss. The device "changes the game" for the average user but is misplaced in offices, according to senior analyst Ken Dulaney. [updated]

"This is basically a cellular iPod with some other capabilities, and it's important that it be recognized as such," he says. "You'll have e-mail in a place that's unsecured. There are no firewalls on the device. There's no ability to wipe [info from] the device if it's lost."

A lack of Exchange, Lotus Notes, and PBX support could be especially damaging, he adds. Apple CEO Steve Jobs mentioned that the iPhone supports Microsoft Exchange during the Macworld San Francisco keynote in January but only pointed to its IMAP delivery method, which is widely regarded as less secure than the format often reserved only for Windows computers and Windows Mobile devices.

Pricing also isn't worthwhile for what the device can do for a business, he says. To be more effective, it would require extra security and support that Apple can't currently deliver.

But warnings may not matter in practice, according to a follow-up observation by Apple analyst Seth Weintraub. While companies may advise against the device at first, they may have little choice but to accommodate it as both mainstream users and executives buy the device.

"The reality is that no matter how hard IT administrators try, the iPhone will be snapped up by their employees -- and not just the average Joes either," he says. "The device is a status symbol that will likely be snapped up by business leaders as the digital technorati. Try telling your CEO the iPhone doesn't play well with your IT systems."

The author also notes that Web 2.0 support may circumvent today's complaints, as Google apps and other web-based production tools may let employees work on projects remotely. Apple's truce with Cisco may also open the door to secure VPN clients and other tools for connecting to an office network, he suggests.

iPhone demand strong for business

A recent report also suggests that more than one in four consumers indicate interest in purchasing an iPhone, and that similar trends in the business market could make Apple's handset a fierce competitor. The survey suggests that nearly 10 percent of businesses planning to purchase new devices in the third quarter are planning to buy Apple's iPhone, reinforcing Weintraub's beliefs about desire usurping function.

Rumors are also circulating that Apple is planning to integrate the iPhone with current corporate email installations, thereby making the device compatible with existing BlackBerry email servers. Many companies have already reported steady inquiries from employees about whether the iPhone will work with mail services and other infrastructure.

By Electronista Staff
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  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001



    Gartner's about to get slammed by the apple-police!

  1. eldarkus

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Feb 2004



    DUH!!! At what point did Apple promote this as a business phone?

    and firewalls on a cell phone?? huh??

  1. dashiel

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2001


    load of c***

    what a load of horse s***... exactly which phones have firewalls again? that's right none of them without a 3rd party add-on solution... oh and wait a minute the iphone runs OS X... which has a built in firewall.

    as for erasing devices remotely. how does gartner know you can't erase a lost device remotely? with screen sharing, back-to-my-mac and similar *built in* services not to mention the patent apple just received for mobile phone theft deterrent.

    argh i hate analysts, don't know their arse from their elbow.

  1. wonderllama

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: May 2007



    Analysts like Gartner and Forrester tend to come across as very self-important. After all, their job is to get companies to pay them for their opinions. I don't remember Apple marketing this product specifically for the Enterprise crowd. After all, it's called the iPhone...not the Phone Pro, right?

  1. Herod

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jun 2007


    article in a nut shell

    everyone please continue to use windows mobile and black berry devices.

    this new iphone is a stepping stone to other abusive substances.

    just say no to iphone!

  1. hayesk

    Professional Poster

    Joined: Sep 1999



    IMAP is less secure than Exchange? Is that true?

  1. mgpalma

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2000



    I can tell you right now we have employees and reps already planning on upgrading their smart phones for the iPhone. Unlike some 'experts' we are very much looking forward to having web 2.0 app available to them to use and are already working on having them available. So whatever...try thinking outside the box for once.

  1. robttwo

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 2005


    uh, what?

    lack of security, unsafe, prone to attacks. Oh, I thought he was talking about Vista for a second. I wonder if they have issued a "corporate warning" against using MS operating systems. Another self-serving dumbass consultant.

  1. nat

    Junior Member

    Joined: Mar 2002


    apple police?

    slammed, yes, and rightly so. did you read the article before commenting? oh c***, i forgot, your sole purpose here is to talk about other posters, not the articles. my bad.

  1. treestman

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jun 2007


    Just a pre-hatchet job...

    Why wait for the report to be released next week when you can report on it now _and_ when it's released? It's TWO negative articles for the price of one!

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