Wall Street Journal


The CIO Journal: The Morning Download – Apple Could Be Stronger Than It Looks

By Steve Rosenbush

Good morning. As we noted earlier this week, Google Inc.’s Android has expanded its share of the global smartphone market to 80%. But is Apple Inc.’s iOS really as vulnerable as the numbers suggest? Matt Asay of Readwrite argues that the answer is no. “Apple … is not nearly as vulnerable to Android’s market share gains as might first appear,” he says.

That’s because Apple remains the “aspirational” smartphone brand, he argues. And once people lock into a smartphone platform, they tend to stick with it. “Android … is the gateway drug to smartphone adoption, but the iPhone remains the ultimate goal,” he says, citing a Retrevo study that shows that 81% of iPhone owners plan to stick with the iPhone for their next smartphone purchase, with 4% expecting to switch to Android devices. He notes that Android users are less loyal, with only 63% planning to stay with the Android platform, and 12% hoping to switch to the iPhone.

For CIOs, the key point may be that the mobile phone market isn’t quite as competitive as it appears at first glance. The highly profitable Apple, which still has the largest app ecosystem, could be consolidating its hold on the corporate market where the top aspirers tap their screens. Do you think Apple is more resilient than the latest headlines suggest? Let us know.

When considering cyber insurance, risk managers avoid CIOs. While more companies are thinking about buying cyber insurance, they’re not consulting the CIO in most cases. Only 8% of CIOs are responsible for evaluating and selecting the insurance provider as opposed to 40% of risk managers, according to a report on Thursday by the Ponemon Institute, a privacy and security think tank. The problem may largely be one of communication, or rather, a lack of it. “What we found, in general, is that a lot of risk management folks felt that talking to IT security was an endless abyss,” Larry Ponemon,  founder of the Ponemon Institute, tells CIO Journal. Risk managers said they couldn’t get the answers they needed from IT about the state of the company’s security and its exposure to cyber threats, he added.

Survey tracks increasing corporate cloud spending. Larger companies are increasingly comfortable with public cloud providers. Adoption of the pubic cloud among those organizations hit 17% in 2013, up from 10% in 2012, according to a survey from researcher 451 Group’s Uptime Institute. The shift reflects the compelling economics of the cloud, but also the deficiencies of corporate data centers, which often fall short in updating their own technology, Matt Stansberry, Uptime’s director of content and publications, tells CIO Journal. “The traditional data center is not going to just go away. But it is going to be part of a portfolio of computing services. And it probably will be a smaller part,” he said.

Selling to CIOs. Guest Columnist Peter Yared, who has spent two decades selling tech to companies and two years on the other side of the table as CIO/CTO of CBS Interactive, shares tips on closing deals in the first of a three-part series. Today’s takeaway: Treating IT like a speedbump doesn’t work. “IT is generally with the program, supportive of cloud applications and no longer a roadblock like in years past,” he writes.  ”Lines of business typically partner with IT, and a deal takes agreement between the two.

CIO Moves: Wex hires BofA exec. Corporate payment service provider Wex Inc. on Tuesday named Stephen R. Crowley CIO. Mr. Crowley joins Wex from Bank of America Corp., where he served most recently as senior vice president, mortgage and affiliate services strategy and execution. Wex President Melissa D. Smith says that his experience with implementing mobile technologies in prior roles at  BofA will help the company create its own mobile applications.


An app that IDs the pills you’re taking. Wired’s Liz Stinson reports on a new iPhone app that uses computer vision technology to help patients both identify prescription pills and understand the possible  effects a patient might experience if certain drugs are taken together. “We want to be able to validate what patients take, and we want a technology that could eventually allow patients to verify each dose themselves,” MedSnap inventor Pathrick Hymel, a former ER doctor, tells Wired. “Because it’s no small task to ask someone who is sick to self-administer 12 medications a day.”

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