Apple's JointVenture Targets SMBs
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Joining rumors of a white iPad 2, a spring debut of the white iPhone 4, a budget iPhone model, and a 4-inch screen for the iPhone 5 is news of a tech support offering from Apple called JointVenture for small businesses.It's not certain if the support service for SMBs will be unveiled at the Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) media event Wednesday, and if it covers use of the iPhone in the enterprise, but it does appear to bolster the company's push to court business users who deploy their hardware for mobile computing. Apple did not return calls seeking comment, but some reports are citing Apple retail workers as sources saying that JointVenture will seek to accommodate small businesses with less than 10 employees -- a market believed to be under-served by the likes of Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT). The JointVenture service would provide small businesses with dedicated tech help support staff that specialize in enterprise use of Macs and iPads used by mobile office workers, according to reports.
News of JointVenture comes at a time when Apple is expected to show off its update to the wildly popular iPad at a media event Wednesday. As part of its strategy to appeal to new customers, Apple is also reportedly working on a budget version of the iPhone, in addition to the annual refresh expected in June.