Apple should introduce an iCloud business suite for business. I agreed with CCS Insight because Apple already has the foundation for a business productivity suite based on iWork and iCloud. It’s odd that it hasn’t released these yet. Apple has the opportunity to develop a suite of online services focused on its rising enterprise customer base.
Apple should introduce an iCloud business suite for business
Apple’s business services
CCS Insight analysts host an annual predictions event called 2022 & Beyond, and among a slew of intriguing future Apple possibilities, they state:
“Apple’s services unit has gone from strength to strength in the past few years. In 2Q21, it accounted for over 20% of total revenue and registered 33% annual growth. The unit’s strength gives the company increasing confidence as a web services provider, and it launches a productivity suite, based on iWork and iCloud, as a service aimed at smaller companies that are less well- served by Microsoft and more frequently use Google Workspace.”
What could Apple services offer?
Consider email, for example. Apple’s recent addition of domain-based email capability within iCloud+ for families could easily be extended to provide a similar (and private) email service for small business users.
A company would then be able to provide email access to its employees, and Apple could add the email archiving, management, and search features that businesses require to ensure they have all relevant documents. Cross-platform integration would be required, but anyone who has ever set up iCloud mail from within a Windows system knows it already is.
Why not make a white-box version of the iCloud Drive service? This could take advantage of Apple’s existing MDM technologies as well as the existing iCloud Drive to provide a company-branded, zero-trust, account-only shared 2TB of iCloud storage for internal use.
The recently released iCloud+ capabilities for phishing protection, secret and single-use email accounts, and Safari privacy protection are the icings on the cake. The fact that you may use storage from various providers all within Drive is frosting on the cake. Existing online enterprise archives are still accessible.
What about iWork?
What about productivity tools? They are already available from Apple. Pages, Keychain, and Numbers are perfectly capable alternatives to Google Docs or Office programs, but they never seem to have caught on. The majority of individuals continue to collaborate on shared projects on Google Docs.
Since 2013, Apple has made iWork apps available online through its iCloud service, but the solution is not quite as user-friendly as Google Docs. How can Apple equal what’s available there with its iWork suite?