Apple has launched in general availability their Apple Business Essentials, and with the launch comes final released pricing. The subscription includes IT services, with a rate starting at $2.99 a month, covering one device and tiers up from there. A new business tier is available of AppleCare Plus hardware coverage with 24/7 support and the ability to call an Apple-trained tech onsite in as little as four hours.
Enrollment of devices includes software installations, and the portal can be connected to single sign-on systems. Each package that consists of the service component comes with two repair credits, which companies can use to get service without having the employee or the customer swipe a credit card. Customers can pool these credits as they aren’t necessarily associated with the individual account.
Why do we care?
I fully admit that as I was researching this, I was picking in my head the option that made sense for my business. As a small business owner who runs on a Mac, this had instant appeal.
And that’s why we care. Thinking like a customer, Apple offering direct service makes much sense for many customers – and before many of you are dismissive of this, all of those Mac – and particularly iOS users – are among the wealthiest cohort of the population.
Who would buy service direct from the vendor? IT Services just got commoditized by Apple in the SMB. Argue me all you want… but as a buyer, I’m considering it… and I BELIEVE in IT services. I’d still like strategic assistance from a technologist… but buying from the vendor on this makes some serious sense.
What happens when Microsoft gets jealous?