Insights, News

Apple Reaffirms Position as Premiere Platform for Mobile Enterprise

By Aila Staff

March 26, 2019

Apple announced a number of new products and services in the week leading up to the March 25 media event that are relevant to enterprise users managing iOS deployments. Two product announcements we think are particularly relevant include:

  • Apple’s ongoing support for lower-tiered devices—like the iPad mini and 9.7-inch iPad—means enterprises will continue to benefit from a high-quality but cost-effective platform to build solutions on.
  • Apple has delineated two tiers of devices: higher-tier devices utilizing USB-C and lower-tiered devices that will continue to use lightning connectors. As a side note, Aila will continue to support both device infrastructures. 

Diving a bit deeper, let’s take a look at the iPad Air, 10.5-in (gen 3) and iPad mini, 7.9-in (gen 5) that were announced and how they sit in Apple’s product line-up:

iPad Air

With a list price starting at $499, the new 10.5-inch iPad Air sits between the cost-effective 9.7-inch iPad ($329), which was refreshed in 2018, and the larger 12.9-inch iPad Pro ($999), which continues to be the preferred choice for use cases that need the larger screen size or more powerful processing performance.

While the 12.9 seems to be in a class of its own, there are some notable differences between the iPad and new iPad Air:

iPad Gen 6

iPad Air

Screen size:
Front Camera:
Rear Camera:
1.03 lbs
1.01 lbs
Starting cost:


The 8% increase in screen size, upgraded front camera, and modest processor upgrades of the iPad Air won’t make a substantial impact for most kiosk-based enterprise use cases and is more likely to see use as a standalone device. Meanwhile, the gen 6 9.7-inch iPad continues to offer exceptional value for performance, ideal for a range of customer-facing experiences

iPad mini

The first refresh of the iPad mini in four years gives the smallest iPad a significant upgrade to its internal specs, while leaving the form factor unchanged. While the better processor is a significant upgrade, the bigger news is the refresh of the clock on the 5-year device support that Apple will provide for the iPad mini, as it does for all hardware products. This is particularly notable given the uncertainty of the iPad mini’s future.

Our Take

Simply put, the March 2019 Apple announcements paint an optimistic outlook for enterprise deployments on iOS. With a broad and expanding suite of devices at varied price points, Apple is second-to-none when it comes to producing high-quality hardware with a user-friendly OS and rich developer ecosystem for enterprise.

The increases in processing power and camera capability across iOS devices gives us another edge on scanning speed and performance while allowing us to offer new and exciting scalable solutions to our enterprise customers. SoftScan, for example, already provides unmatched scanning performance on any iOS device. Customers adopting the new iPad mini and Air would immediately benefit from our SoftScan to enhance a range of use cases, from clienteling, to mPOS and much more.


Have thoughts on the recent announcement as it applies to the use cases your enterprise is serving? We’d love to hear your ideas!

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