The leader of JAMF, which helps enterprises manage Macs and iOS devices, says Apple is absolutely serious about the enterprise, even if they don't talk about it.
Forget the haters: Galaxy Gear and Note 3 make a great team
I've heard a lot of fuss about smartwatches lately, but I wasn't entirely convinced. After spending some time today with the new Samsung Galaxy Gear watch and Galaxy Note 3 phone, I'm starting to see the light. Here's why.
Let's face it: There's something very James Bond, Dick Tracy, or Captain Kirk about talking into a device on your wrist, a gadget ready to take your commands — or serve up information on demand. While other manufacturers have dipped a toe in the watch market, Samsung is the first to introduce a mass-market Android watch.
It's also a watch that requires the new Galaxy Note 3 jumbo phone — which makes for a pricey one-two combination. Though we've seen reports otherwise, Samsung was telling media at the launch event in New York City that the Note 3 would be the only phone to work with the Galaxy Gear when the watch ships this fall; the company is looking at adding support for other phones, but wouldn't say whether existing models might support the Gear in the future. For these reasons, the idea of mass market is...relative.
A high-end product for executives
While many might assume geeks are the play here, I see more appeal for the Galaxy Gear among business users. At $299, the Galaxy Gear is no casual purchase. Rather, it's a very expensive “dumb” companion that lacks the ability to do much of anything without being connected to the phone via Bluetooth.
At first, I groaned at the thought that the watch was wholly dependent on the the phone for, well, everything. Should the phone battery die, so too will my access to all that makes the watch cool — placing calls from the miniature dialer, performing voice commands, accessing apps. There's no on-board storage for the watch, aside from a cache to store up to 50 snaps taken with the watch's 2-megapixel camera.
But then I considered the security risk of starting to use a watch as my mobile device. The more I thought about it, and about all the times my watch is off my wrist, the more it became clear that Samsung's approach might actually have merit. The gym, the hotel room -- there are any number of places that a watch can end up separated from your wrist...and if it's storing personal information, passwords, or other data, that's a problem. Samsung's approach evokes memories of BlackBerry Bridge, BlackBerry's approach to securely pairing its doomed Playbook tablet with a BlackBerry phone to view contacts and email.
But Samsung appears to be trying to race into the breach left by BlackBerry's market implosion, with a big emphasis on data security -- in fact, the company also announced yesterday that KNOX, its technology for storing data in a secure container on devices, will ship with the Note 3 and will be available for consumers to store sensitive personal data, not just for enterprises.
More stylish than expected
With its Bluetooth-based iBeacons turned on in all its U.S. stores, Apple is both attempting to improve customer experience and demonstrate its new location-based notification service. While retail is a natural fit for iBeacons, the teachnology has potential well beyond the store or mall. Here are ten other industries and spaces where iBeacons could deliver killer value.
BlackBerry has a lot of hurdles to cross to stage a comeback but one in particular might be especially tough to overcome: the operators. My experience getting started with the Z10 shows AT&T, at least, doesn't seem to find the Z10 a priority.