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Apple iPhone use in the Enterprise

Level 12

For those of you that aren't aware, I became an iPhone addict early after their initial release and continue to be a huge fan with the release of the new software versions and the 3G versions of the device. You can read a bit more about it in these blog posts - "Top of the Mornin to You from Cork" and "Blackberry is out - iPhone is in".

All that said, that's my perspective as a user of the iPhone. As a network engineer running an enterprise network, it sort of scares the bejeezus out of me. To name a few of the obvious impacts:

  • the population of Apple devices on the network just went up exponentially
  • Safari is now used by a larger percentage of our users
  • we now have all these devices roaming around our wi-fi and VPN networks that we have literally no control of or visibility into

Now if you get creative, there are some things that you can do to start to monitor the presence and impact of these devices on your network. First off, all of the MAC addresses for the iPhones begin with 00:1b:63:ee:xx:xx. So, whether you're using the Orion or the tools in the Engineer's Toolset you can pretty quickly identify and start tracking these devices.

Several reports recently in Network World and other rags have pointed out issues related to iPhones on the corporate network, including the latest issue at Duke University. I haven't personally seen any isssues yet, other than lots of requests to help people configure Exchange on their devices.

Either way, the popularity of these devices is definitely causing lots of us to rethink our strategies around personally owned mobile device use on the corporate network. If you haven't run across this yet, get ready...

Let us know how you handle iPhones:

Flame on...
Josh

3 Comments
rschroeder
Level 21

Apple products killed our 200 Mb Guest Internet pipe when the latest version of iOS was released.  Folks chose to have their iPhones and iPads do the iOS upgrade while they were at work instead of at home, impacting work resources and paying guests.

Not impressed.

Jfrazier
Level 18

it was the people that use your guest internet that chose to do their upgrade there...could have been an android update just as easily.

gfsutherland
Level 14

As soon as an I-Phone update is announced there is a mad rush to get it, I am still amazed at the crush/rush to get it...