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Apple & SAP announce partnership on iOS SDK, apps & training

Apple and enterprise software firm SAP on Thursday announced a partnership that will see the creation of a new SDK, allowing the latter company's clients and developers to produce iOS apps exploiting the SAP HANA Cloud Platform.

Coming alongside the SDK will be a new "SAP Fiori for iOS" design language, and "SAP Academy for iOS," intended to supply tools and training. All three elements will roll out sometime before the end of 2016.

SAP is meanwhile expected to build native iOS apps for business operations, using Apple's Swift programming language and Fiori-based interfaces. Apple gave the example of a field maintenance worker using an app to order parts or service, or a doctor sharing patient data with colleagues.

"This partnership will transform how iPhone and iPad are used in enterprise by bringing together the innovation and security of iOS with SAP's deep expertise in business software," said CEO Tim Cook in a prepared statement.

The deal bears similarities to Apple's last major enterprise deal, forged with IBM in 2014, intended to spur iOS adoption in the workplace by creating MobileFirst "template" apps that can quickly be adopted by different industries.