Big news for Apple and Salesforce today:

Apple and Salesforce today announced a strategic partnership that brings together the number one customer relationship management platform and iOS, the world's most advanced mobile operating system, enabling powerful new mobile apps for business. Working with Apple, Salesforce is redesigning its app to embrace the native mobile platform with exclusive new features on iOS. The companies will also provide tools and resources for millions of Salesforce developers to build their own native apps with a new Salesforce Mobile SDK for iOS, and a new iOS app development course on Trailhead, Salesforce's free, web-based learning platform.

"We're excited to work with Salesforce and that their industry-leading CRM will embrace native iOS and deliver exclusive new features on iPhone and iPad," said Tim Cook, Apple's CEO. "With the powerful combination of iPhone, iPad and iOS — the best hardware and software for business — together with native Salesforce apps and the new Salesforce SDK, we can deliver great customer experiences for businesses around the world."

"With this partnership, we're bringing together the world's number one CRM platform with iPhone and iPad, the world's best devices for business," said Marc Benioff, chairman and co-CEO, Salesforce. "Together, Salesforce and Apple are defining a new era of mobile innovation with native apps on iOS, and empowering millions of people with access to Trailhead and the skills they need for the jobs of the future."

Once upon a time, administering Salesforce was part of my job. The user experience was, to put it mildly, not good. If Apple can help with that, and Salesforce can help deepen Apple's already broad presence in the enterprise, it could be win/win from execs down to end-users.

Apple previously partnered with IBM among others as part of this market growth strategy. I'm not sure where it stands now in terms of sum-total devices sold and users added to the ecosystem, but I'd be really curious to find out.

VECTOR | Rene Ritchie

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