Great designs, seamless user engagement, and immersive experiences were usually targeted at commercial mobile app users. Not any more. Business apps are rewriting their rules and they are moving into a new realm by offering beautiful, responsive, and fabulous interactivity to business users.

Apple offers a wide range of cutting-edge features for business apps. Top iOS app developers are tapping into Apple’s intuitive features to seamlessly integrate them to create engaging business apps.

Design

Multitasking

The multitasking feature on iPad is a big welcome where users can now work across two different apps at the same time. It is another way to use your iPad in more ways. The multitasking option offers three different functionalities – Slide Over, Split View, and Picture in Picture.

Slide Over: the main purpose of this feature is to allow a user to pick secondary apps to interact with. Usually, slide occurs on the right side of the app (on the left side in a right-to-left language version of iOS). By swiping the right edge of the screen, users can invoke this feature.

Split View: Displays two apps side by side, where users can resize and interact with both apps.

Picture in Picture: Users can view a floating video window on another app.

Slide Over view

Split View

               

Picture in Picture View   

Making users work across devices

Handoff

If Slide Over, Split View and Picture in Picture allows users to access two different apps at the same time, Handoff makes apps function across devices. This features comes out as pretty useful in business environment as users can start a task on one device and continue on with another device, without compromising on productivity.

The Handoff feature can be used on any iPhone, iPad, Mac, or even Apple Watch that meets the continuity system requirements. Handoff works when the devices are near to each other and when each device is signed in to iCloud with the same Apple ID. Bluetooth and Wi-Fi should be turned on on all devices (and of course enable Handoff feature in all devices).

Source: Apple  

If you are planning to facilitate your users to seamlessly switch from one device to another, and continue with their ongoing activity – without reconfiguring each device independently – Handoff could be your best bet.

Functionality

iOS lets your take functionality to the next level. Depending on the extension that your apps use, you can share and move around documents between apps, access content using voice and VoIP just as you would on the phone app.

Universal Links

Introduced in iOS 9, universal links are nothing but standard web links (e.g. http://yourcompany.com), which point to both a webpage and a specific piece of content inside an app.

Everytime when you open an Universal Link iOS will immediately check if there is any installed app registered for that particular domain. If it detects any app, it will be launched immediately without loading the web page. If it doesn’t detect any app, it taps into the website link and will open your website in Safari.           

With Universal Links, you can provide users with the most integrated mobile experience, even when your app is not installed on their device.   

Universal Link benefits

* Secure – everytime when a users install your app, iOS checks you file in the web server and ensures that your website authorizes your app to open URLs on its behalf. This way, the association between the website and your app is secure.

* Simple – One URL works on both, a website and an app

* Unique – Since Universal Links use standard HTTP or HTTPS links to websites (not like your custom URL schemes), they cannot be claimed by other apps.

* Private – Your app can communicate with other apps without letting them know that your app is installed.

* Flexible – Universal Links works even when your app is not installed, by opening your website in Safari    

Here’s Apple’s guide for Supporting, Creating and Uploading Association File and Handling Universal Links

Sirikit

Siri is much more than just answering your basic questions. Siri can now intelligently patch an user’s daily routines with your app to suggest convenient shortcuts just when they’re needed. You can accelerate users interaction with your app using Siri Shortcuts, either directly from lock screen, in search, or from Siri Watch face.

Users can run shortcuts with voice, and create their own shortcuts with the new shortcut app.

* Siri Suggestions – Siri uses signals such as time of day, location, and motions (such as running, walking, driving etc) to learn when to suggest shortcuts.

* Tap Notifications – The shortcuts appear as notifications on the lock screen, and users can tap on these notifications to run the task.

* On-device Learning – In Siri, all learning is done locally on the device itself, where Siri creates an intelligent and personalized experience without compromising your privacy.

Callkit

Apple stated that the Callkit framework is meant to elevate 3rd party Voice Over IP (VoIP) to a first party on iOS 10. The Callkit framework is design to allow your VoIP seamlessly integrate with the Native iPhone UI, and provide a similar interface and experience for end user as well.

The Callkit API also lets you to create App Extensions that can associate a phone number with the Caller ID, or can even tell when a number should be blocked.

Check out this comprehensive Video and Transcript on Callkit framework

Location

Offering right information is prime in any user engagement. iOS offers interesting features to help you provide users with right information at the right time.

iBeacon

The iBeacon technology is designed to give apps location awareness functionality. Introduced in iOS 7, the iBeacon technology uses Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) to establish a region around an object, which allows an iOS device to determine when it has entered or moved out of that region.

Any iOS device that shares data using Bluetooth Low Energy can be turned into an iBeacon. Beacons are nothing but small Bluetooth transmitters. The apps installed on your iPhone look out for signals transmitted by these beacons and respond accordingly when your iPhone comes into the range.

For instance, if you pass by a beacon in a retail store, the retail store’s app (if it is installed in your phone) could alert you about the store’s ongoing offers and discounts.

iBeacon greatly helps businesses, which are interested in welcoming and informing people when they are in close proximity to their outlets. This does not mean that iBeacon is meant just for retailers and other similar businesses. Apple’s  iBeacon offers a world of possibilities to interact between iOS devices and iBeacon hardware and are widely being used by several top industries.

Here’s a detailed report on how to get started with iBeacon

Conclusion

In this age of competitive business landscape, it is highly important to get your app ‘enterprise ready’. Enterprise apps are no longer single dimensional, as it used be earlier. Today, businesses are building apps that would serve as a powerful engine to increase revenue, support business decisions, and boost employee productivity. iOS provides the most up-to-date, comprehensive, and powerful tools to seamlessly integrate them into your enterprise systems, making it the best platform for businesses today.

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Ideaplunge employs some of the best minds in developing fabulous apps for enterprises and startups. Today, we rank among one of the best iPhone app development companies around, catering to top industries such as Retail, Healthcare, Fashion, Social and Lifestyle.

Have a iOS project on your mind? Write to us at talktous@ideaplunge.com

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