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IBM makes life easier for enterprise Mac users

Apple and IBMThe decades-old conflict between PCs and Apple’s Macs softened a little more this week when IBM unveiled new services that further simplify integration of Macs into cloud-based enterprise environments.

IBM and Apple have had a working relationship for years, but thanks to an expansion of IBM’s MobileFirst Managed Mobility Services portfolio, designed specifically to support Macs, Apple-branded devices can now more easily join networks without onerous configuration and setup, thus simplifying network and email access and application downloads.

This means companies can order Macs directly and start using them in the workplace right away. The expansion also paves a firmer path for “bring your own device” settings (BYOD) so employees can network using their own Macs via SaaS products or client data centers. Either way, IBM clients will experience reduced costs as well as fewer hassles.

IBM was providing similar services on a custom basis for various clients, but with this MobileFirst expansion those services become standard.

If this level of standardization sounds like a no-brainer, consider that Apple’s share of the tech market was rather small – around 10 percent – before the iPhone debuted in 2007 and helped spark the rush toward tech mobility. Since then, as IBM noted in its news release on the MobileFirst expansion, Mac sales have outpaced PC sales nearly every year.

“Ease of adoption and use are at the foundation of every Apple product, and as these devices are used more in the workplace, people expect the same experience they enjoy with Apple technology in their personal use,” Richard Patterson, general manager, Infrastructure Services, IBM Global Technology Services, said in the release.

According to the market research firm IDC, Mac sales rose 16.1 percent year-over-year in the quarter that ended June 30 at the same time PC sales declined. 11.8 percent.

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David Sheets

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