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Previously, Microsoft said that it is shifting its focus from mobile platform for consumers to maintaining it for enterprises. However, at the time many had predicted that Microsoft's strategy was going towards the wrong direction and that it will not yield positive results.
And the analysts may have been somewhat right. Well, just yesterday we heard that Delta Air Lines has decided to stop using Windows devices, including Windows phones and Surface tablets. It was also said that the company was now replacing the devices with Apple products that include the iPhone and iPad.
While Microsoft has said that the hardware change was part of an overall Delta hardware refresh to standardize on a 10.5-inch form factor it looks like Microsoft is losing several important customers to Apple. Just today, General Electric (GE) announced its partnership with Apple.
Apple is strong when it comes to delivering mobility solutions in terms of hardware, and thus the partnership between Apple and GE will now help to deliver powerful industrial apps designed to bring predictive data and analytics from Predix, GE's industrial Internet of Things (IoT) platform, to iPhone and iPad.
"GE is an ideal partner with a rich history of innovation across the industrial world in areas like aviation, manufacturing, healthcare, and energy," said Tim Cook, Apple's CEO. "Together, Apple and GE are fundamentally changing how the industrial world works by combining GE's Predix platform with the power and simplicity of iPhone and iPad."
"The partnership between Apple and GE is providing developers with the tools to make their own powerful industrial IoT apps," said John Flannery, Chairman and CEO, GE. "Our customers increasingly need to arm their workforces through mobility. Working together, GE and Apple are giving industrial companies access to powerful apps that help them tap into the predictive data and analytics of Predix right on their iPhone or iPad."
The two companies have also unveiled a new Predix software development kit (SDK) for iOS, which will give developers the tools to make their own powerful industrial IoT apps.T he new Predix SDK for iOS will be available to download starting Thursday, October 26. The SDK will allow developers to make powerful, native apps that take full advantage of the industrial analytics from Predix and tap into the power and ease of use of iOS, the world's most advanced mobile operating system.
These apps will give industrial operators more insight and visibility into the performance of their equipment and operations right from their iPhone or iPad. For example, a Predix app can notify a worker on their iPhone of a potential issue with equipment such as a wind turbine and allow them to collaborate with remote teams when performing inspections and repairs, collecting relevant data instantly. These industrial apps will close the information loop faster, ultimately increasing cost savings and minimizing unplanned downtime.
In collaboration with Apple, GE is also developing apps for both internal use and its customers, giving workers powerful tools to enhance their jobs and help operations run more efficiently. GE's Asset Performance Management (APM) Cases app, which is available in the App Store, helps industrial businesses increase machine reliability and availability while reducing maintenance costs and managing operations risks. Customers including Exelon Corp. are already putting APM to work and seeing improved equipment uptime and overall productivity.
"Apple is known for setting the standard on hardware and simple software interfaces," said Brian Hoff, director of corporate innovation at Exelon. "When you combine this with the power of Predix and all of the data Exelon is aggregating and analyzing, the possibilities for game-changing solutions are endless."
GE will standardize on iPhone and iPad for mobile devices and also promote Mac as a choice for its global workforce of more than 330,000 employees. Apple will promote GE's Predix as the industrial IoT analytics platform of choice to its customers and developers.