Apple Teams With GE To Outfit iPhones And iPads With Industrial IoT Apps

Apple and GE are diving deeper into the Internet of Things space with a new partnership aimed at getting industrial IoT apps onto Apple's popular mobile devices.

The partnership extends Apple's efforts to engage with the enterprise space while also furthering GE's major industrial IoT initiative.

[Related: Apple Teams With Channel Heavyweight Accenture To Push iOS In The Enterprise]

The companies said GE's industrial IoT platform, Predix, will now be available for use with development of apps for iPhone and iPad via the new Predix software development kit (SDK). The Predix SDK for iOS will be available Oct. 26, Apple said.

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The SDK will provide developers with tools for getting predictive industrial analytics from Predix into iPhone and iPad apps.

In a news release, Apple offered the example of a Predix-created app notifying a worker via his or her iPhone that a piece of equipment is experiencing issues. The worker can then collaborate with remote employees on repairs using the iPhone.

Apple and GE are "fundamentally changing how the industrial world works" through the new partnership and SDK, Apple CEO Tim Cook said in the news release.

GE has been working to get to the forefront of the industrial IoT market through platform openness and partnerships. The company's Predix cloud is based on a multitenant "gated community" model, meaning that customers belong to the industrial ecosystem.

"GE has its own applications, and now there's a whole community of developers and solution providers who are coming together around these apps," said James Gillespie, CEO of Pittsburgh-based solution provider Gray Matter Systems, in a previous interview with CRN.

The industrial apps created using the Predix platform "will close the information loop faster, ultimately increasing cost savings and minimizing unplanned downtime," Apple said in its release.

"Our customers increasingly need to arm their workforces through mobility," said GE CEO John Flannery in the news release.

In addition to partnering around the SDK, GE is pledging to make iPhone and iPad the standard mobile devices provided to employees, while also promoting Macs to employees.

Apple, meanwhile, is promising to promote Predix "as the industrial IoT analytics platform of choice to its customers and developers."

The announcement with GE is the latest in a string of enterprise partnerships for Apple in recent years.

In August, Apple teamed with channel powerhouse Accenture to bolster the development of business solutions that are available via Apple devices. The Apple-Accenture partnership has featured a focus on IoT services, as well.

Other top enterprise partnerships for Apple include Cisco Systems, IBM, Deloitte and SAP.