Up until a few years ago, I spent most of my career writing software that was used by consumers. This was very satisfying as it was easy to explain to others what I did and in many cases, they’ve heard of the software such as Eudora, PayPal, or eBay. With the rise of the smartphone, everyone and his dog is learning to write software and hopes to strike it rich on the App Store. Many developers, it seem, think that the exciting software to write is this type of software where the developer can earn a name for herself or himself.
Through a few changes in my positions at a company, I started working on retail software that would be used by store associates and would never be seen by consumers. At first this seemed pretty boring as enterprise software is typically very utilitarian and doesn’t get to use many features of modern smartphones. Now that I am fully immersed in enterprise software, there are some key advantages to it over writing consumer software.
- All devices running the software get the same app version using MDM (mobile device management); no worrying about people running old software.
- Limited number of users makes it easier to train people to use the software.
- Bugs can be fixed and features added very quickly without App Store approval process.
- No one writes reviews of the software that hurt your feelings!
- You don’t have to worry about marketing a $0.99 app and the race to the bottom in pricing.
With more and more iOS devices being used in enterprise, there are huge opportunities for development. It may not get me fame or fortune, but it is currently my path to a decent living!