Apple’s new iPhone software, iOS 7, has added a bunch of new features to make an important customer happy: the enterprise.
We previously named nine new features geared toward IT professionals that buy fleets of phones for their employees.
But there are two more features that could make iOS 7 good for business, the folks at Moovweb told us. Moovweb builds mobile websites for retailers like Macys, Men’s Wearhouse, Kay Jewellers, and works closely with iOS.
These features are geared toward consumers, but will impact businesses, too.
1. iBeacons, a micro-location technology: iBeacon is an alternative to a wireless technology called NFC (near-field communications). NFC is most commonly used to make payments from the smartphone.
iBeacons is a bit different. It uses a low-energy form of Bluetooth to transmit your presence to a really small area. It could lead to a whole new set of apps for businesses based on indoor maps, in-store marketing and precise location information.
“There are a lot of retail possibilities” with iBeacons, Ishan Anand, Moovweb’s director of new products, told Business Insider. For instance, as customers enter a store, a list of all the sale items complete with turn-by-turn directions to find them could be sent to their phones.
iBeacons can be used to accept payments, too. PayPal has already launched a new in-store mobile payments technology, PayPal Beacon, that uses the same tech.
2. A free version of iWork, Apple’s answer to Microsoft Office: No one thinks that iWork is going to cause enterprises to immediately get rid of Microsoft Office. A lot of enterprises have customised Office to work with their businesses needs, or they are locked into multi-year contracts with Microsoft.
But, as employees use it on their iPhones and iPads and grow familiar with it, they’ll bring it to work. And that’s how the iPhone and iPad wound up as popular business devices in the first place.