Apple just partnered with another business technology giant in hopes of winning mind share as a serious corporate technology supplier.
The Mac maker and enterprise software titan SAP have joined forces in a partnership that will see SAP building corporate apps tailored for Apple’s mobile devices like the iPhone and iPad.
Additionally, SAP also will create a new software development kit that corporate developers can use to build their own iOS apps for their companies. The new software development kit will let coders build corporate software powered by SAP’s HANA database technology.
“This partnership will transform how iPhone and iPad are used in enterprise by bringing together the innovation and security of iOS with SAP’s deep expertise in business software,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook in a statement. “As the leader in enterprise software and with 76% of business transactions touching an SAP system, SAP is the ideal partner to help us truly transform how businesses around the world are run on iPhone and iPad.”
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For Apple (AAPL), the alliance is just the latest in a series of high-profile partnerships the Cupertino, Calif.-based company has been making over the past few years in an attempt to sell more of its devices to corporate customers.
In September, Cook said that Apple’s enterprise technology sales hit $25 billion in a twelve-month period that ended in June. He stressed that enterprise sales are “not a hobby” for Apple, but he conceded that the company lacked the traditional sales expertise of selling to corporate clients enterprise companies typically have.
“We’re proud to take this special partnership between Apple and SAP to a groundbreaking new place,” SAP CEO Bill McDermott said in a statement. “In giving people an agile and intuitive business experience, we empower them to know more, care more and do more”
SAP and Apple did not elaborate on what type of corporate apps SAP will develop for the iPhone and iPad, only to say that they will be “for critical business operations” and will be built using Apple’s Swift programming language.
It’s also not clear at this time whether these corporate apps will be similar in nature to the over 100 business apps that have so far been built from Apple’s partnership with IBM.
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Like the new Apple and SAP partnership, IBM used Apple’s Swift coding language to build corporate iOS apps targeting the healthcare, utilities, retail, and other industries.
Apple recently posted its first drop in year-over-year quarterly revenue since 2003 amidst a slowdown in iPhone and iPad sales.