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iPads in the Corporate Enterprise

Discussion in 'iPad General Discussions' started by icebun, Jun 27, 2011.

  1. icebun
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    icebun iPF Novice

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    I am new to the iPad which I am looking to introduce to our Corporate environment.

    Having read around the subject, can I ask if :-

    - Anyone has deployed a Mobile Device Management solution (3rd party or via Exchange) and what sort of costs it is per device (assuming no minimum number).

    - What office suite you decided for maximum compatibilty with Windows based MS Office. For what I can see, DocsToGo seems the best but I am not sure if it is the most feature rich.

    - Recommend Apps in this enviroment (I have installed PocketCloud Pro, FileBrowser,DocsToGo,PrintCentralPro)

    - What enterprise solution you used for tagging corporate email signatures to the mail client.

    - How best to manage iPads in a pooled enviroment. To me I think you would have to deploy set configs once you know ahead who will be using it.

    - Any other tips you can recommend.

    Thanks.
  2. jsh1120
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    jsh1120 iPad Addict

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    Can't be much help but I'm interested in the topic you raise. However, I do have a few comments that may help you.

    () I've used DocsToGo for years and for the most part it works quite well. However, it is NOT a true Microsoft Office clone. In my experience word processing works quite well. On the other hand, highly complex spreadsheets are sometimes a problem, especially if they're created via another "excel compatible" program (e.g. Open Office or Google Docs). Such documents often require translation to "true" Excel documents before DocsToGo can work with them and, even then, the results aren't guaranteed. Bottom line: be ready for some support issues if users are expecting full Microsoft compatibility in all cases.

    () Frankly, I can't imagine trying to work in most corporate environments with the iPad's on-screen virtual keyboard. Short emails, yes. Anything more and you'll need bluetooth keyboards.

    () If your firm supplies smartphones to employees, you may find that the requirements are significantly reduced, providing some savings in that area. I find, for example, that my Android smartphone's functionality is overkill now that I have the iPad. YMMV.

    () Though I haven't investigated the issue seriously, I suspect you'll find that centralized management via an IS department is a major problem. For example, I don't know how you would prevent an employee from adding apps via their own iTunes accounts. That might or might not be a problem for you. Ongoing maintenance/access to deployed iPads would, I'd think, be a nightmare compared to PC's.

    () If email security/management is a major issue for your firm, I don't think Apple can compete with the proprietary features offered by RIM (Blackberry). But that's based on some research I undertook awhile back. Things may have improved.

    () All in all, I don't think iPads are ready for prime time on a number of issues that corporate IT departments confront. They are, after all, first and foremost personal consumer devices, not corporate computing devices. Perhaps the best analogy is the management of corporate smartphones. The same issues and limitations appear to apply.
  3. twerppoet
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    twerppoet iPad Legend

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    I don't know the answers to any of your questions, but this is where I would start looking. At least it is something to sort through while waiting to see if anyone has some first hand advice to offer.

    Apple - iPad - iPad in Business - Resources
  4. kriskiter
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    kriskiter iPF Novice

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    I have about 40 or so I am managing in a corporate environment and it is going quite well. PM me your email address if you'd like to discuss via email.
  5. icebun
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    icebun iPF Novice

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    Guys, thanks for all the replies.

    Kistkiter, as I have not acquired enough posts I cannot PM yet so if you could forward me your mail address I can pick up with you in more detail.

    For me, I have managed the following:-

    Full VPN access to our Juniper SSL VPN via the Junos client.

    Run a Citrix xenapp desktop and with the right software, transfer files off our file servers to the device for offline viewing.

    Interested to hear about trying to use the virtual keyboard for all day work.

    For me I find that lengthy typing actually hurts because of the lack of travel (aka none).

    Still debating whether iPads or net books are more ideal for our users.

    For document reading though, this is a great unit.
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2011
  6. GadgetGeek71
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    GadgetGeek71 iPF Novice

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    I'm a project manager and I use SG Project Pro throughout the day. This is a great mobile project management tool that I'm very happy with. I also use Documents to Go for Word, Excel and Powerpoint documents. All of this with the use of Dropbox, keeps all of my files up-to-date and synced.
  7. laserguy007
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    laserguy007 iPad Fan

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    can't help you with other questions.

    Sent from my iPad 2 White 64GB + 3G Verizon using iPF

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