iOS 11 is a game-changer for enterprise productivity

On Tuesday, Apple CEO Tim Cook announced the highly anticipated iPhone X, calling it "the biggest leap forward since the original iPhone." Apple also released the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, each a compelling new entry on their own. The new iPhones join the already robust portfolio of new products released in the last four months: the MacBook, Mac desktop, and iPad Pro. All of these products are enterprise-ready. However, unlike 10 years ago when BYO demand pushed Apple into the enterprise, today’s IT teams can confidently build out business programs based on iPad Pro and iPhones with iOS 11. This will give employees one of the biggest productivity advantages in the modern enterprise world.

The release of iOS 11 goes well beyond the consumer-oriented features that we all eagerly await with each iOS upgrade. In the latest release, Apple is aiming for a greater share of the enterprise market by specifically targeting the enterprise user experience. Specifically, the new iPad Pro offers a more robust user experience that will likely give desktops a run for their money. As organizations retire their older PCs, the new iPad Pro with iOS 11 multitasking enhancements will become a worthy contender for many desktop positions. Initial sales look promising given that Apple has sold more than 11.4 million tablets since WWDC in June — its biggest non-holiday quarter for the tablet in more than two years.1

The iPad Pro has been redesigned to not only function more as a light laptop but also exceed the computing power of most laptops. This refinement alone should catch the eye of business travelers who need laptop capabilities without all the added weight to carry around. On the hardware side, it includes a 10.5-inch screen, brighter and sharper display, 30% faster CPU, 40% faster GPU, 12-megapixel camera, and 4K video.

However, it’s what’s inside the new iPad Pro that will really get the user’s attention.


Files is a completely new iOS native app that is tightly integrated into iOS 11. It can find, organize, open, and delete all the files in iCloud and from third-party storage services like Box or Google Drive. For example, an employee who works across departments could easily access content from different storage locations, such as Box for IT and Google Drive for accounting. From a security perspective, IT should be sure to enforce the iOS managed open-in rules through EMM and ensure that only authorized users can access corporate content within supported apps and containers.

Dock enhancements:
The new Dock makes switching between apps much faster and enables multitasking features on compatible devices. Basically, the new actions mirror the user experience on a Mac desktop, resulting in a more consistent experience across the Apple device ecosystem from desktop to mobile.

New app switcher:
The app switcher essentially brings the macOS Mission Control experience to the iPad. It shows all of the most recently used apps and offers access to Control Center settings. This makes it very easy to seamlessly work with multiple apps and pull in multitasking features such as drag-and-drop to help users work even more efficiently.

Drag and drop with Multi-Touch:
This new functionality allows the user to drag and drop images, text, links, and more within an app or between apps or documents. The new drag-and-drop actions can also be superimposed on the iPad to stack multiple items — a feature users should love because stacking multiple items is far easier and more intuitive on an iPad than an iPhone.

iOS 11’s new productivity features go well beyond the new iPad Pro. Password autofill extends Safari’s password autofill from the browser to apps that access content from the same web applications. Safari 11.0 stores passwords in the iCloud keychain and can save users from having to remember passwords, cut and paste passwords, or look them up when setting up iOS apps. A new screen recording feature allows users to share a recording like any other piece of content, which can be very useful for help-desk troubleshooting or training videos. It can also be controlled by IT with EMM via the screenshot restriction.

In addition, the new lock screen will enable users to perform actions such as respond to a text or turn on the camera right from the lock screen. Peer-to-peer Apple Pay now allows money to be sent through iMessage or Siri so users can take advantage of the credit and debit cards stored in Wallet, use them for other Apple Pay transactions, or transfer balances to their bank. A new automatic setup capability makes it easy for users to upgrade their devices by pairing the old device with a new replacement device to transfer data and settings over the air.

All of the new productivity features in iOS 11 are sure to catch the attention of business users and line-of-business IT departments looking for a desktop experience in a lighter and more user-friendly device. To learn more about the exciting new productivity features in iOS 11, see our latest white paper, “What iOS 11 Means to the Enterprise.” You can also read our customer case studies to find out why thousands of MobileIron customers have already chosen iOS as their mobile platform.