The iPhone was never intended for use within the enterprise, and according to Apple CEO Tim Cook, his company was pulled into the space that now sees the Cupertino giant boast a presence in every Fortune 500 company and 8-in-10 companies writing custom iOS-based apps.
"After the iPhone showed, people began to take iPhones into the enterprise and they began to say, 'hey, we want you to do this and that' … and really have the mobile operating system that is the best for enterprise," he said, speaking at Dreamforce 2019 in San Francisco on Tuesday.
"And we took that challenge apart, and it became evident that there was going to be this blending of personal and business in ways we've ever seen before.
"Most of us don't want to carry two phones … so for a decade or so, we've been working on bringing enterprise features to the operating system."
See also: 5 predictions about Apple's next moves (TechRepublic)
Despite coming a long way in the enterprise and having "great momentum", Cook said it's still behind the consumer revolution.
"For too many still, mobile is about browsing and email, and messaging. Those are all important but, arguably, the way you change the business is using mobile apps," he said.
Cook said people are using iPhones and iPads to transform businesses and "energise them".
Speaking alongside Cook was Salesforce chief Marc Benioff, who said his phone has become an extension of his office, as everything is on his device.
"I run my business on my phone, I have for years, I don't even own a computer anymore," Benioff said. "I don't need one. You guys have done such a good job … I have it somewhere, but I couldn't even tell you where it is.
"I think I have it mostly – I haven't thrown it away because I have some videos on there, pre-iPhone, but I don't use it anymore and the phone has really become an extension of my office wherever I am."
Overnight, Salesforce announced the launch of a redesigned Mobile App and a learning app called Trailhead GO with exclusive features to Apple's iOS and iPadOS.
Touching on the partnership, Cook said, "I think the sky's the limit here".
Sustainability not just a marketing grab
According to Cook, many confuse innovation with change.
"Innovation is about making things better, not just merely changing, and that requires an adaptive thought that is well beyond just changing something," he said.
"We've never set the objectives to be first; we've always set the objectives to [be] the best … that north star has helped guide us through the temptations of going for market share the other kind of things that companies can have objectives to do – we just want to make the best product."
Cook also discussed Apple's sustainability initiatives, such as making the company run on 100% renewable energy, and said it's important for a company to keep innovating while staying true to its values.
"We care deeply that we get that privacy in all of our products -- privacy is very important to us, we view it as a fundamental human right -- and so we put a lot -- we've double down on this many, many times. We've looked in the mirror hard because we wanted to be a steward of the Earth, and we didn't want to merely do the things that you're legally required to do, but we want to go well beyond that, and challenge ourselves," Cook explained.
Apple now has the "audacious" goal of only taking recycled materials for its products.
"Most people would go, 'there's just no way', but the same people told us there was no way we could ever run apple on 100% renewable energy," he said. "We try to stretch ourselves well beyond what we know currently we're able to do … we want to leave the world better than we found it."
Cook said it's important to operationalise the values of an organisation, otherwise, he said, it becomes a market grab.
"We don't want to market, we want to do. We want to make a difference," he said. "In order to make a difference, you have to operationalise it … otherwise it becomes a slogan or, or a poster on the wall, or, or something like that."
The Cupertino chief also said it's important to remember improving consumer products and improving the state of the world are not mutually exclusive activities.
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