Apple and IBM have announced that they will team up in what they call an "exclusive partnership" that marries the best of Apple's hardware with IBM's software and services expertise.
The move was welcomed by the stock markets with IBM's shares up by nearly 2% and Apple's gaining 1.72%. It also bears some similarities with a deal struck 33 years ago that saw Microsoft piggyback on IBM's PC platform to become the giant it is today.
Clearly, though, the two companies complement rather than compete with each other with very little, if any overlap. Broadly simplifying, Apple will use IBM as a medium to crack the elusive enterprise market while Big Blue will get privileged (but not exclusive) access to the iOS ecosystem.
Apple, for all its consumer clout, is still a minor player in the enterprise market where BlackBerry's domination is already ebbing away. With slowing growth, growing pressures on margins and increasing competition, it was only a matter of time before it looked elsewhere.
Add the slew of announcements by Google and Samsung for the enterprise stack and it is clear that something had to be done to prevent Android from owning that lucrative segment.