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Do iPad 2, iOS 4.3 make enough gains for enterprise?

Tom Kaneshige | March 4, 2011
Enterprises applaud the upcoming Apple iPad 2's videoconferencing, HDMI and tethering capabilities, but Apple could have gone further by slashing original iPad prices and extending Home Sharing.

The few initial enterprise-related criticisms of the iPad 2 relate to pricing and sharing.

Companies, for instance, probably wanted to see Apple slash prices on original iPads during the iPad 2 announcement. Oddly, Apple made no mention of the cost of the original iPad despite the fact that the iPad 2 will cost exactly the same as the original iPad in every configuration.

Apple, however, began offering an original iPad clearance sale on its Web site that shaves around $100 from the price tag. For CIOs starting an iPad pilot project, it makes sense to jump on the clearance sale. With a $100 savings per unit, CIOs might be able to expand the pilot project to include more individuals or even another group.

(It should be noted that if they are already in a pilot project, then videoconferencing capabilities of the iPad 2 weren't part of the initial architecture.)

Another example of an Apple enterprise teaser: iOS 4.3's updates to iTunes Home Sharing and AirPlay. The updates will let people stream music and movies from iTunes on their PCs to the iPad or iPhone over a Wi-Fi connection. Third-party apps will also be able to tap into AirPlay for audio and video streaming.

Many companies need to distribute content to iPads and iPhones, and Home Sharing is a nice start. But Home Sharing will likely require the user to be on the same subnet. "My only disappointment is that we will need more than Home Sharing to get content to devices at very large scales," Edge says, "which is something most [corporate] environments need in lieu of traditional file server access."

 

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