(You're reading all posts by Ryan Faas) Ryan Faas is a technology journalist and consultant living in upstate New York who has written extensively about Apple, business and enterprise IT, and the mobile industry. In addition to writing for Cult of Mac, he is a contributor to Computerworld, InformIT, and Peachpit Press. In a previous existence he was a healthcare IT director as well as a systems and network administrator. Follow Ryan on Twitter and Google +.
About Ryan Faas
At the opening of this year’s NFL season, we looked at how the iPad has become a popular training tool among many NFL teams. With the season over and the Super Bowl just days away, many players, coaches, and fans are already looking ahead towards the NFL draft in the spring and next season.
Next season, Apple’s tablet will be an even bigger part io the NFL and it may even revolutionize parts of the organization and even the sport of football itself. Here’s how.
Last week FileMaker launched a new campaign to encourage businesses to adopt the company’s flagship database product line as an app development platform for the iPhone and iPad. The move is unique and the idea of FileMaker as an enterprise development solution does have its appeal – creating FileMaker apps requires no software development knowledge or experience and it can deliver native performance and functionality that HTML 5 web apps can’t.
While many Apple fans and IT professionals that support iOS devices in the workplace are eagerly awaiting tomorrow’s Apple announcement, a group of Apple in the enterprise experts are meeting at MacSysAdmin 2012 – a conference for European IT professionals tasked with managing Macs and iOS devices in business, education, and other workplace settings. The annual conference traditionally posts videos of its sessions online for free (as does the Penn State MacAdmins Conference that was held in the U.S. this spring).
That isn’t the only major conference for Mac and iOS IT professionals, however. October brings two other major events (one of them free) and there are a number of excellent smaller events scheduled throughout the fall.
Apple will launch the next iPhone (presumably named the iPhone 5) along with iOS 6 tomorrow. The new iPhone is expected to pack a range of updates that will make it a much more significant release than last year’s iPhone 4S. The biggest expectation is that the iPhone will include 4G LTE support and that, unlike the new iPad, it will support LTE bands used outside of North America.
We won’t know all the details of the iPhone 5 until Apple’s unveiling at the Yerba Buena Center. There are, however, three important issues that business users and IT managers will need to in mind during and after following tomorrow’s launch event – all three of which could have a significant impact on bring your own device (BYOD) programs that encourage users to bring their personal mobile devices into the office.
The NFL season kicks off tonight with a game that pits the New York Giants – last season’s champions – against the Dallas Cowboys. For many teams, this season also marks the first use of iPads instead of the traditional paper playbooks. A handful of teams pioneered the iPad as a complete replacement for playbooks last year. Although the iPad was only used as a playbook replacement by a few teams last year, it was more broadly used as a training tool and a companion to traditional playbooks. This year many more teams are investing in the iPad as a digital playbook and a player training solution as well as a way for coaching staff to communicate more directly and effectively with players.
There’s certainly a cool factor that any technology and football fan will appreciate. There’s also a lot that many businesses can learn from the NFL teams about how the iPad can be secured, managed, and used in almost any professional context.
The success of devices like the iPhone and iPad in healthcare has become so pronounced that the Department of Health And Human Services has begun to single-out the use mobile devices as part of the meaningful use requirements for electronic health records (EHR) systems. In addition to identifying mobile device use, the agency has also taken steps towards explicitly regulating mobile device security needs in the healthcare industry.
Apple’s decision to ditch Google Maps in favor of its own mapping technology in iOS 6 wasn’t much a surprise. However, Amazon’s decision to reject Google Maps in its second generation Kindle Fire tablet is a bit of surprise – particularly since the Kindle Fire is an Android device.
Unlike Apple, Amazon isn’t developing its own mapping systems. Instead, the new Kindle Fire will rely on mapping functionality from Nokia. Unlike the original Kindle Fire, which had no innate location services or maps app, the new version will sport location-based services, though whether they will be based integrated GPS or solely on Wi-Fi triangulation (like the Wi-Fi only iPad models and the iPod touch) is still an unanswered question.
Could IBM’s Watson replace Siri? That’s an interesting question and IBM’s answer appears to be yes. Big Blue is working to turn the supercomputing solution that made news when it beat Jeopardy! champions Ken Jennings and Brad Rutter into an app that could run on a smartphone. If successful, IBM will turn Watson into a supercharged version of Apple’s digital assistant.
Apple has released a new white paper for CIOs, IT leaders, and IT professionals. This one targets FileVault 2, which was introduced in Lion and remains present as a high security feature in Mountain Lion. The 42 page document joins a growing collection of white papers and guides available from Apple that detail the mechanisms and best practices for integrating Macs into Windows-centric enterprise environments.
At VMWorld, this week VMWare showed of Horizon Mobile for iOS – an enterprise solution that separates business apps and content on an iOS device from a user’s personal apps, documents, and data. It’s an iOS version of a tool that VMWare previously demoed, but hasn’t yet shipped, for Android devices. While the name and the goal of Horizon mobile is essentially the same on both platforms, the company is taking a vastly different approach for iPhones and iPads.
Not only is the iOS approach different, it’s also nowhere near as revolutionary – other mobile enterprise companies have using similar approaches for a while and the one truly distinctive feature is one that Apple might not approve for distribution.