A Big Disapointment


Yesterday evening Apple announced iPhone 2.0 software. A beta is available now. Apple will deliver the SDK and new enterprise features. Enterprise features? Do I hear Lotus Domino support? No, Apple supports Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync. No news about the second half of the world, no word about IBM. So where was IBM yesterday? IBM even was not named as a partner.

At Lotusphere everybody expected an iPhone announcent. There was an announcment, but it was dissapointing as well. Nobody really just wants an Domino Web Access on iPhone, everybody wants an integrated push solution for PIM data. Finally as Notes / Domino 8.0.1 arrived two weeks ago, even the DWA access for iPhone was missing. Any third party vendors out there, who will deliver? No. Onebridge will come out with a kind of managed IMAP support. Not what users looking for. So half of the world will not get an enterprise feature for iPhone. So where is IBM?

So what is really disappointing here is the ignorance of IBM at this point. Yes, iPhone has “only” a one percent marketshare in the US, and marketshare in Europe might be even lower. But as in the “Mac support” discussion the last years IBM ignores that its the opinion leaders that early adopt these kind of technologies. And these are very often the decision makers.

I will not loose a customer at this point as some colleagues pointed out. Nobody will now move from Notes to Exchange because of missing iPhone support. There are tons of good arguments to choose Lotus Notes / Domino over Exchange. But people who are today evaluating which technology to choose might have now a slightly different perception of IBM claiming “innovation” as IBMs business. Some decision makers will not hear when IT talks to them about scalability, robustness, platform independence. They want to have an vendor that is setting the trend – or at least working with the companies that set the trends.

Update: Read Ed Brills blog entry. Thats the other side of IBM. People who communicate openly on issues like this. Respect.

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