Apple and Cisco. Enterprise video next?

Monday, 31 August 2015

Following Apple’s and IBM’s partnership announced last year, Apple and Cisco have announced a rather vague partnership when it comes to iOS in the enterprise:

August 31, 2015 — Apple® and Cisco today announced a partnership to create a fast lane for iOS business users by optimizing Cisco networks for iOS devices and apps, integrating iPhone® with Cisco enterprise environments and providing unique collaboration on iPhone and iPad®.

Looks like Cisco will be doing most of the technical work and supplying their connections with big business and government ‘with Apple’s support’:

Apple and Cisco are also working together to make iPhone an even better business collaboration tool in Cisco voice and video environments, with the goal of providing employees with a seamless experience between iPhone and their desk phone.

With Apple's support, Cisco will deliver experiences specially optimized for iOS across mobile, cloud, and premises-based collaboration tools such as Cisco Spark, Cisco Telepresence and Cisco WebEx in order to deliver seamless team collaboration and reinvent the meeting experience.

Another way of looking at this is that Cisco’s sales team are probably being incentivised to sell iOS compatibility with Cisco’s telepresence products. That means iPhones being used in conjunction with wall-sized screens in meeting rooms and with people in other parts of the world who also use iPhones.

Mobile devices and enterprise video

At some point people will become accustomed to recording 4K video on their iOS devices for work reasons. How will they organise all that content?

Up until now Adobe’s strategy is to replicate the Desktop Publishing wave that helped Apple Macs get into corporate marketing departments. Adobe are building up a name for internal and external marketing based on Creative Cloud. Although hard, it is easier selling 250,000 Creative Cloud seats to 5,000 purchasers in large organisations than it is selling 250,000 memberships to the public - and even harder getting them to keep paying.

Eventually video will be a peer to text documents, PDFs and presentations: organisational currency. 

Desktop publishing in the late 80s and early 90s was Apple’s corporate lifeline. 80% of DTP’s graphic design features were absorbed into word processing applications by the late 90s. Apple couldn’t survive on what was left - Final Cut Pro 1.0 was designed to sell Macs to people who would realise that they needed to work with video. It has just taken much longer than many expected for video to become mainstream.

Which video editing metaphor will be absorbed into applications dedicated to day-to-day organisation of communication in large organisations? That’ll depend on which one people are more comfortable with, and which one IBM’s and Cisco’s sales teams push the most.

A ‘Movies for iWork’ application anyone?