A recent study conducted by Vanson Bourne, revealed that 65 per cent of surveyed IT departments are concerned about unauthorized users accessing data if an iPhone is lost or stolen. The same study also showed 64 per cent of IT departments not put into place security steps to protect against threats targeted at the iPhone. Most cited the fact that they aren’t widely used in business as the reason.
This study shows one of the glaring weaknesses of the iPhone to service enterprise. Because BlackBerry is by far the most secure platform in the smartphone market, many organizations have turned to it to ensure the protection of their most valuable asset: intellectual property.
While Apple deserves an incredible amount of respect for implementing a hugely successful App Store, it will forever be stuck in a consumer market. That being said, I think it’s easier to shift from enterprise to consumer, versus the other way around. RIM has the opportunity to service the consumer market with fun and innovative applications, and I would be surprised if the iPhone were ever able to position itself as a viable solution for IT managers looking to remotely manage a network of several thousand devices. In fact, a quick look at the latest iPhone 3.0 software reveals that it still can’t run applications in the background.
More interesting points revealed in the study include:
- 10 per cent of IT decision makers believe that the iPhone is not as good an email tool as the BlackBerry, and they only want to manage one form of device.
- A little more than half (52 per cent) are concerned about the threat of downloading apps to the iPhone, while 40 per cent of respondents said they are worried about the threat of users downloading company data without the IT department knowing.
- Some 14 per cent of IT departments have banned the use of smartphones altogether for work purposes.