Apple’s iOS Dominates Global Enterprise Market

by Matt Klassen on February 18, 2015

Move over Blackberry, enterprise has crowned a new mobile king. According to a report released this week from virtualisation solutions firm Citrix (PDF), Apple’s iOS stands as the most dominant mobile platform in the enterprise sector, accounting for 64 percent of the worldwide enterprise-managed mobile devices in 2014. Apple’s dominance was followed distantly by Android at 27 percent and Windows at 9 percent, with Blackberry retaining no significant presence in the global business sector.

“iOS remains the dominant mobile platform in the enterprise at 64% worldwide, Android is gaining popularity in Asia, and Windows is more than twice as popular in EMEA (16%) as it is in North America (7%),” Citrix mobile analytics report for the first half of 2015 said.

The interesting revelation, however, is that Apple’s dominance in the enterprise sector speaks little to the company’s mobile security credentials and more to the strength of the ongoing BYOD movement, as enterprise IT departments continue to struggle with establishing effective security protocols for iOS and other mobile devices. Further, the report warns, such consumer oriented devices create other pitfalls for enterprise, including the threat of rising data costs.

“The line between personal and business mobility continues to blur as people routinely use the same smartphones and tablets across every part of their lives,” said Chris Fleck, Vice President of Mobility Solutions and Alliances, Citrix.

“It’s no longer possible to maintain artificial boundaries of personal and business mobility. With insights into the latest mobile user behavior, preferences and needs, the Mobile Analytics Report provides a window into the potential pitfalls and opportunities for mobile operators and enterprise IT to deliver mobile experiences that people expect at home, work, and play.”

Without much reading between the lines there’s one clear message that came out of this report, the global enterprise market is still desperately searching for a secure yet functional mobile platform that employees will deploy across both their personal and business lives, one that allows employees to use the devices they want, but one that has effective security protocols in place to protect corporate data.

While Apple has claimed the top spot in the enterprise market in 2014, I would wager this not because of Apple’s stellar security credentials but simply because of Apple’s popularity among consumers. The BYOD movement, in turn, has forced enterprise to begrundgingly adopt the devices that employees want to use, so its really no surprise that iOS devices top the list.

But as I said, apart from the fact that Apple offers scant secruity measures for a desperate corporate IT sector, iOS devices poise one other significant challenge for enterprise, increased data spending. As the report warns, both users and IT departments alike need to be aware of how new phablet-sized mobile devices, in particular, impact mobile data spending and enterprise budgets. For instance, owners of Apple’s new iPhone 6 Plus were found to use twice as much data as regular iPhone users—a difference Citrix attributes to the increased viewing of streaming video on the larger screen.

Simply put, while Apple does indeed top the list of most popular mobile platforms in the enterprise sector, unlike Blackberry it’s popularity, not security, that has secured Apple the top spot, and given the fact that iOS devices still present serious security, financial, and productivity risks, its doubtful the company will remain there long. While the challenge for IT departments in 2015 will be to continue to manage risk consumer oriented devices, the pressing task will be to find a phone works for both enterprise and employees, and that’s something Apple has yet to produce.

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Written by: Matt Klassen. Follow by: RSS, Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.

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