Back in early 2007, Steve Ballmer laughed out loud when asked about the iPhone and its potential as a business device. Ballmer said that not only was it the most expensive phone on the market, but that it wouldn’t appeal to business users because it didn’t have a keyboard. Fast forward three years later where the iPhone has completely overhauled the mobile space and Apple is at it again with the iPad.
When rumors of an iPad or Apple tablet started to surface, there were plenty of naysayers lauding netbooks, notebooks and smartphones saying there’s just absolutely no room for a tablet computer. It would be a niche device. Well, not only did Steve Jobs & Co. sell more iPad tablets than Steve Ballmer would have liked, but this “niche” device is now being adopted by the business market as a serious tool.
Business Insider notes a few key points in an article by the Wall Street Journal regarding the iPad’s gradual infiltration of the enterprise market:
- Chicago law firm Sonnenschein Nath & Rosenthal “offers access to its internal systems for more than 50 iPad-toting attorneys, and anticipates issuing iPads as an alternative to laptops as soon as next year.”
- Apple’s Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook “said in July that “very surprisingly” half of the Fortune 100 are testing or deploying iPads.”
- “More than 500 of the 11,000-plus applications built specifically for the iPad are in the business category. A free app from Citrix Systems Inc., which allows people to access internal corporate programs from the iPad, has been downloaded more than 145,000 times.”