In a scenario likely to become more and more common, the London-based Standard Chartered Bank recently gave its 75,000 strong workforce the option of switching their mandated Blackberry handsets over to Apple’s increasingly popular iPhone.
Adding the iPhone as an option to such a large workforce is always fraught with red tape and is probably an avenue most IT teams would rather avoid. Still, with the iPhone inundating itself as the premier smartphone on the planet, corporations will only be able to hold onto the Blackberry for so long. For the time being, though, other financial institutions like HSBC Holdings and Morgan Stanley remain Blackberry-only. On a personal note, a large law firm I used to work for was “forced” to accommodate the iPhone after demands from a growing number of high powered associates and partners became too loud to ignore.
A spokesman for Standard Chartered Bank told Reuters that the process of “migrating corporate email services from the Blackberry to the iPhone started about a month ago” and that the new initiative will cover wholesale and consumer banks across the globe. The bank currently operates over 1,700 branches in 70 countries.
There’s no doubt that Blackberry and Windows Mobile devices are still the big dogs when it comes to enterprise customers, but in typical Apple fashion, the iPhone is slowly but surely picking up steam.