Applications & Apps Business

Android Tablets Get Microsoft Apps

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Microsoft announces a strategic agreement with 11 global and regional hardware makers in the pre-installation of mobile versions of Microsoft software on Android-powered tablets.

Microsoft AndroidThe apps in question are Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, OneDrive and Skype. The companies signing the agreement are Samsung, Dell, TrekStor (Germany), JP Sa Couto (Portugal), Datamatic (Italy), DEXP (Russia), Casper (Turkey), Tecno (Africa), Hipstreet (Canada), QMobile (Pakistan) and Taiwanese ODM Pegatron.

"For OEMs, these deals will increase the value of and enrich people’s experiences on Android devices," the Microsoft announcement reads. "ODMs are important because they extend Microsoft services to the ecosystem… they help to reach a greater number of other device manufacturers, resulting in even more choice for customers around the world."

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Android Goes to Work

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Google launches its long brewing enterprise smartphone program-- Android for Work, a collection of applications, online services and industry services involving use of the mobile operating system on the workplace.

Android for WorkAs Google puts it, Android for Work essentially provides a dedicated work profile on the user's device. Building on the built-in multi-user support and SELinux security in Android 5.0, Android for Work allows IT to deploy work apps alongside personal apps, without employees worrying employers are snooping on personal data.

The technology comes from Divide, a BYOD software startup Google swallowed back in May 2014.

An enterprise-managed version of the Google app store, the imaginatively titled Google Play for Work, handles app distribution. Android for Work also includes a built-in productivity tool suite with email, contacts and calendar complete with Exchange and Notes suite.

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BlackBerry Takes on Wearables, IoT

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BlackBerry announces an Android Wear version of the BBM application at CES 2015-- allowing users of a wide range of Google-powered smartwatches to access the popular communications software.

BBM AppIn other words, BlackBerry expects its (mostly) business customers to start buying smartwatches to quickly access notifications without need for digging into their pockets or purses. As well as alerts and message navigations, the Android Wear BBM app also allows users to respond to messages either hands-free via Google Now or pre-defined messages, as well as accept BBM invites from their wrists.

Devices compatible with the app include the Moto 360 and the Samsung Galaxy Gear S.

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IBM-Apple Partnership Gives App Fruit

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The Apple - IBM enterprise partnership gives first fruit-- MobileFirst for iOS, a set of made-for-business iDevice apps bolstered with IBM cloud-powered big data and analytics capabilities.

iPhonesDesigned for the banking, retail, insurance, financial services, telecommunications, government and airline segments, MobileFirst apps are customisable and deployed, managed and upgraded via the cloud. IBM and Apple also promise delivery within a secure environment linked to core enterprise processes.

“This is a big step for iPhone and iPad in the enterprise, and we can’t wait to see the exciting new ways organisations will put iOS devices to work," Apple says. “The business world has gone mobile, and Apple and IBM are bringing together the world’s best technology with the smartest data and analytics to help businesses redefine how work gets done.”

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Apple Announces Huge Partnership with IBM

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In an eminently logical announcement, Apple and IBM have announced an exclusive partnership that aligns the strengths of each company to deliver solutions to the enterprise market. The partnership will enable IBM’s 100,000-strong sales force to deliver enterprise solutions on Apple’s mobile devices.

Apple IBMThis is another step in Apple’s increasing focus on enterprise which already sees Apple CEO Tim Cook reporting that 98 percent of the Fortune 500 and over 92 percent of the Global 500 are using iOS devices in their business today.

Announcing the partnership, Cook said: “iPhone and iPad are the best mobile devices in the world and have transformed the way people work. For the first time ever we’re putting IBM’s renowned big data analytics at iOS users’ fingertips, which opens up a large market opportunity for Apple. This is a radical step for enterprise and something that only Apple and IBM can deliver.”

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