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IBM deal with Apple has been a long time coming

Over a week ago, we covered the almost historic deal between IBM and Apple, an alliance big enough to shake Microsoft at its foundations, as well as other companies until now believed to be permanent fixture in the technology landscape.

Today we cover another, less-known fact about this deal, and why it should come as no surprise.

A little IBM history

IBM’s interest in the mobile world began to gain traction in 2012, as the company began expanding its applications development to blooming platforms, like Android and Blackberry, at a time when the company’s internal framework managed over 500,000 Microsoft Windows-based PCs, most of which built by Lenovo, formerly an IBM company, until development of a new internal project began: one that would take the company in an entirely new direction.

Introducing: project MESA

MESA started as an internal project describing the semi-automatic deployment of enterprise applications. The ambitious plan included automatic setup of corporate tech, either unattended, or done by remote.

IBM went quite far with MESA until its purchase of Fiberlink last November, and by extension, Maas360. The cloud mobile management company’s focus is unmistakably Apple-centric, and for a good reason: Apple has been on the forefront of cloud application deployment for the corporate world, and Maas360 watched that development very closely.

With MaaS360 securely in IBM’s arsenal, the company’s core strategy is finally rock-solid. As a matter of fact, IBM believed in its new product so much, that it began mass deployment internally, starting with the CIO’s office.

Say goodbye to Blackberry’s MDM

The shift to MaaS360’s MDM (Mobile Device Management), from Blackberry’s more expensive and less ubiquitous platform, was surprisingly quick: 3 days to implement the system within IBM’s infrastructure, allowing for 15 thousand devices implemented in the first day, and 30 thousand within a week. The shift was a major hit for Blackberry, who at the time provided for the majority of mobile devices used by IBM employees.

This scenario gives a clearer insight into Blackberry’s stock dive, just as IBM and Apple eloped into one massive MDM giant, with virtually unlimited potential in the corporate device deployment market.

Worst news for Microsoft

Microsoft is downsizing its workforce, with its primary target still being low-end consumers. With that in mind, it’s difficult to say how much of an impact its recent, and sizable, layoff strategy will have on the company’s image, and stock value.

The industry of internal enterprise management is dangerously close to an homogeneously Apple-centric landscape, especially when most mobile workers use iPads and iPhones to do business.

Xcode and Macs

Mobile development on iOS requires use of OSX proprietary Xcode, which makes it very easy, and even logical, to push IBM to adopt Macs into its internal infrastructure, especially considering Apple’s efforts in providing seamless integration across all its devices. 

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