IBM has announced the 100th MobileFirst app created in the partnership with Apple that has brought a host of enterprise grade applications to iPads and iPhones.
IBM claimed that MobileFirst apps have been provided for use across 14 industries since the partnership with Apple began, including the automotive, chemicals and consumer sectors, and 65 individual professions ranging from finance to flight attendants.
The MobileFirst apps offer a combination of IBM’s big data and analytics capabilities and Apple’s consumer-focused user interfaces and experiences.
The aim of the partnership is to create apps that allow enterprise employees to work more effectively on iOS mobile devices.
For example, the Passenger Care app lets customer service agents provide assistance to travellers without having to return to a desk to access a computer. IBM said that this provides a smoother, more personalised experience while speeding up check-in and easing airport congestion.
Fred Balboni, general manager for the Apple partnership at IBM, explained that future MobileFirst apps will make use of the natural language and analytics capabilities of the Watson cognitive computing system.
“Our apps are evolving to deliver cognitive capability that refines insights into the most relevant information, enhancing the quality of decision making,” he said.
Embedding Watson capabilities into MobileFirst apps will allow them to ingest data, learn from the analysis and adapt and evolve to the needs of users over time and use, according to IBM.
The company is developing enterprise apps for the iPad Pro, Apple’s largest iPad to date aimed at professional users, with the goal of tapping into the tablet’s expanded power, larger screen size and the multitasking features found in iOS 9. This will allow professionals to work on two apps side-by-side at the same time, and make use of the Apple Pencil.
IBM also boasted several large enterprises as users of the MobileFirst apps, including home appliance manufacturer Bosch and Scandinavian airline SAS.
Apple and IBM recently pushed MobileFirst apps onto the Apple Watch, giving a fairly consumer focused device more of an enterprise capability.