Former Director of Field Engineering and Professional Services at Apple, Chuck Goldman, and some former Apple and Motorola employees have started a business that focuses on building mobile apps for Enterprise. This field, which is blowing up at the moment, is ripe for exploration by smaller companies because the bigger consulting firms have little to no experience with mobile application development, especially on a platform like the iPhone.
Speculation is that Apple may be an investor.
Though Goldman can’t yet name any of Apperian’s clients, he says they include “some unbelievable billion-dollar customers.” And when it comes to selling projects, the startup’s roots at Apple don’t hurt. “We have a great relationship with Apple,” says Goldman. “We can’t claim that we’re ‘officially supported by Apple’—no one gets that. But they are highly encouraged by Apperian.”
In Xconomy, Chuck lays out some of the interesting apps the Apperian team is currently building:
• For a large automobile insurer, Apperian is working on an application that would let insured drivers submit insurance claims directly from accident sites. (That’s what Goldman means by “point of service”—using the phone to take care of a situation where and when you need to.) “You get in an accident, you whip out your iPhone. The phone knows where you are. You take a picture of the accident scene. With a few clicks using a preformatted template, you send in a report. You’re on your way, and you get your claim adjusted quickly.”
• For a big commercial real estate company, Apperian is creating a mobile property management system designed to free agents from the hassles created by being in the field so much of the time. “Currently, all these agents have laptops and cell phones, and they’re ducking into the closest Starbucks and trying to access their corporate databases. They’re faxing blueprints. It’s a very manual process. With an iPhone app, they’ll have always-on access to everything that their prospective clients need. They can…flip through building portfolios, bring them up on a map, use a ‘Near Me’ functionality—the Loopt functionality—to see whether all their other agents are. Agents will have lease information at their fingertips, laser-measured blueprints that they can e-mail to clients right from their phone.”
Having access to Apple, their former client lists and a fresh new set of former Apple salespeople certainly gives Apperian a good start.