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Apple WWDC 2012 – Brilliantly Simple Innovation

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Apple made some interesting announcements at WWDC this week that, as usual, continue to drive innovation in the mobility space and underscore the tenets that we here at ShoreTel strive for – simplicity, flexibility, and perhaps even more importantly, voice.

It’s interesting to see a company like Apple – on the leading edge of consumer innovation – placing renewed emphasis on voice communications. OS X Mountain Lion now includes support for voice dictation, the iPhone has enhanced voice features, and FaceTime now works over cellular connections. In short, Apple is recognizing that its customers still want to talk to one another. Simple. Brilliant.

Equally brilliant is the recognition that customers are talking on multiple devices (our own CMO Kevin Gavin aptly describes this as Multiple Device Personalities). Adding the ability to sync iMessages across devices is important, but not revolutionary. Giving customers the option to set their phones to “Do Not Disturb” (and set exceptions to that rule) is also important, but not revolutionary. What is most striking from a business standpoint is that Apple is offering users flexibility in how they communicate, by making communications multi-modal and personal. Say what you want, how you want, from whatever device is most convenient. This is key to supporting – and enabling – mobility and BYOD in the enterprise.

And of course, there’s Siri, the darling of voice technology. She can now launch apps, post Facebook statuses, and talk to you in your car. But my question is this – when will she be able to operate the ShoreTel Mobility app? We would love to see an API for Siri. It would be very interesting if businesses could use the technology to control their own applications – giving customers even more flexibility in using their i-devices for work and for play.

WWDC 2012 is proof of the direction our industry is heading. Communication is key, business is changing, and consumers – inside and out the enterprise - are mobile. ShoreTel customers know how critical the voice application is, and how essential their devices are to their daily lives. We’re excited about the next phase of business communications – and all of the new features that will enable brilliant simplicity in the workplace.

How will you use the latest Apple innovations at work?