iPhone in the Enterprise?

What CIOs should consider before adoption

After one of the most hyped product launches ever, the question arises: Should CIOs "play nice" with the iPhone crowd?

Much has been written about how enterprise unfriendly the iPhone is. Security, cost and "Mac versus PC" reasons top the list of complaints, but there are other issues CIOs need to consider, say analysts.

"Push corporate e-mail is not supported, there is no third-party application library, and there is no way for corporate developers and [independent software vendors] to write them," writes Avi Greengart, principal analyst at Current Analysis, in a report. "There is a significant learning curve on the virtual keyboard, after which it always remains difficult to enter URLs, passwords and names that are not in your address book."

Greengart notes that while the smart phone is aimed at consumers, many have work e-mail accounts and will want to access them. Some vendors have already developed workarounds for connecting to corporate e-mail, but security questions remain. Looking ahead, he contends the onus is on Apple to explain to IT managers and their users how to access corporate e-mail accounts, and to provide robust security controls.

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