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iPhone OS 2.0 was released concurrently with the 3G phone. (iPhone OS 2.0 may be installed on first generation iPhones.) The operating system update includes a number of features designed for business including support for Microsoft Exchange. Increased mobile security includes secure access to corporate networks over Cisco's IPSec VPN. Security features, such as remote wipe and inactivity time-out, have also been added. Apple has released a software developer kit (SDK) for custom applications and a configuration utility for centralized management.
Although the iPhone is finding its way into small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), network administrators for large enterprise networks are more hesitant about allowing the phone to connect directly with their Microsoft Exchange infrastructures -- especially in industries that require high-security. (BlackBerry traffic to a corporate network goes through RIM's operations center) Encryption applications are a drain on the phone's battery, which has already been criticized for poor performance and is sealed inside the device. The iPhone's inability to run applications in the background while the user is talking on the phone is also a concern.
Another issue is that the distribution model that Apple established for music with iTunes has now been extended to software. Third-party applications must be approved by Apple before they can be installed, and they can be installed only through Apple's "App Store." This presents a problem for the enterprise that does not want to share a custom-built mobile application with its competitors.
iPhone 3G exchanges the flat aluminum housing of the first generation iPhone for a sleek convex black or white plastic case. The switch to plastic enables better transmission for the many radio receivers inside than the metal enclosure. iPhone 3G can connect to the Internet through third generation (3G) mobile broadband technologies like UMTS and HSDPA in addition to EDGE. By default, the iPhone will prompt the user to join open or closedWEP or WPA encryption is present.
iPhone 3G also features assisted global positioning system (A-GPS), which combines triangulation using cellular towers with a GPS receiver. The iPhone 3G does not support Flash, Java or MMS. Built-in Bluetooth supports wireless earpieces but not stereo audio, laptop tethering or FTP.