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Everyone has known for a while that Apple would soon be coming out with an update to the iPhone OS. We knew it would have some great enhancements for enterprise use, but, since Apple is great at keep secrets, everyone has been waiting with baited breath to see what those enhancements would be.

Finally, on April 8th, iPhone OS 4 was publicly announced. In fact, Sybase was mentioned in Steve Jobs’ keynote message when he discussed device management for enterprises. You can watch the iPhone 4 keynote (we are mentioned around the 40 minute mark).

As expected, iPhone OS 4 introduces a number of enterprise focused enhancements for the iPhone platform. Multitasking, enhanced security, new device management capabilities, and improved enterprise integration are some key improvement areas.

We are pleased that Apple has taken the next step to enable vendors like Sybase to develop, deploy and manage enterprise solutions for iPhone. We expect these enhancements and features will enable us to further enhance our products and ensure continued adoption of iPhone in the enterprise.

Some key features:

  • Deployment. Enterprises can develop and deploy internal applications and updates without requiring users to connect to their computers or companies to post applications to Apple’s public App Store. iPhone OS 4 enables enterprises to securely host and wirelessly distribute in-house apps to employees over Wi-Fi and 3G. Sybase customers (and every enterprise) will be happy about this! It has been a common concern for enterprises deploying large numbers of devices. This will simplify deployment for all customers developing custom applications for internal use.
  • Device Management. Deploying and managing iPhone has been made even easier. New mobile device management APIs can be integrated with third-party solutions, like Sybase Afaria, to wirelessly configure and update settings, monitor compliance with corporate policies on iPhone devices. These enhancements will allow Afaria to extend its management capabilities to additional levels of control.
  • Sandbox model. The separation of personal and enterprise data on the iPhone is a significant feature for Sybase products. Our sandbox model continues to secure and encrypt enterprise email, calendar and apps at the application level, and does not require the entire device to be locked.
  • Application Development. Apple has announced enhancements to application development APIs. These allow enterprise developers to build great apps for iPhone. Sybase offers two development products — Sybase Unwired Platform and SQL Anywhere — for developing iPhone applications.

We look forward to sharing more information on our planned support for iPhone OS 4 as it becomes available for each of our products. Read more information on Sybase solutions for iPhone.

Now onto the fun stuff! If you’d like to learn more about iPhone and iPad in the enterprise, don’t miss these upcoming seminars. We will be traveling across the US, continuing our “Sybase Solutions for iPhone” seminar tour in May and June. You can register now for iPhone seminars in Dallas (May 25th), Denver (May 27th), and Atlanta (June 23rd*).

* Note: Registration will be available soon for Atlanta.

More Stories By Ian Thain

As one of the Sybase Technical Evangelists, Ian regularly addresses technical audiences all over the world and his sessions are always very well attended. He also writes education classes, whitepapers, demos and articles for various Sybase products and publishes regularly in Journals such as SYS-CON's PBDJ and International Developer Magazine. He is also the Sybase Unwired Platform & PocketBuilder Evangelist and works closely with the team in Dublin, CA and Concord, MA on new features and demonstrations for the products. In his customer-facing Evangelist role, Ian is very involved with the design, production and testing of Enterprise class Unwired Solutions, that have been implemented using Sybase's Unwired tools for Sybase customers around the globe. In addition, Ian is a dedicated technical expert continually working with Sybase's key partners and clients to enhance the capabilities of the Unwired solutions that Sybase can offer to its customers. Ian can also be found on Twitter @ithain