Android 11 – How It Affects the Enterprise Community and Solutions Offered by 42Gears

Android 11

As Android devices play a major role in most offices, each Android update has a major impact on enterprises worldwide. Google released the beta version of the newest major update, Android 11, towards the beginning of 2020. You should make sure you know the impact Android 11 will have on Android device management, security, and privacy.

When Will it Be Released?

The beta version of Android 11 was released in mid-February 2020. The public version of Android 11 will release in mid-September 2020. That said, the specific date on which a device can upgrade to Android 11 depends on the device manufacturer.

Let us talk about some key Android 11 features that impact the enterprise community.

1. Work Profile

The most important enterprise-focused enhancement in Android 11 is improved support for work profiles on company-owned devices. Android work profile features allow users to separate work and personal activities on company-owned Android devices, thereby achieving a good work-life balance. If an admin adds a work profile to a device while provisioning it via QR code or Zero-Touch Enrollment methods, the device is recognized as a company-owned device. If a device is added through other provisioning methods, such as through Android Enterprise, the device is recognized as personally-owned.

2. Greater Control Over App Permissions

Android used to offer very little flexibility in terms of permissions for features like location tracking. However, this is going to change with Android 11.

For example, users can choose to only grant ‘one-time’ permission to any third-party app asking to access device features like location tracking or microphone and camera functionality.  Android 11 will also allow admins to revoke permissions for apps that employees haven’t used for a long time. Android 11 accomplishes this through a new “auto-reset” feature. Auto-reset will automatically disable an app’s permission to access device location if the app hasn’t been used for a few months. The “auto-reset” feature will likely impact most devices. 

3. Support for Biometric Authentication

Biometric authentication involves using several factors for authentication such as fingerprint, iris scan, and face scan. The improved identity and security feature in Android 11 will integrate granular biometric authentication into apps. In Android 11, IT admins will be able to use the BiometricPrompt API to determine biometric strength levels if they are weak or strong. Following this, they can unlock or provide access to sensitive parts of the app. This will provide improved security for users accessing business apps.

4. Test for Compatible OS Updates

A common issue for any OS update is the risk that apps may no longer run properly. Android 11 makes it easier for developers to ensure their apps will run successfully on an updated OS. Developers can test for compatibility before updating their apps to a new OS, in order to determine which new OS behavior might pose problems.

5. Improved Notifications Panel

Android 11 includes support for 5G connectivity. Though 5G will not be enterprise-ready in time for the launch of Android 11, the OS will support apps that use 5G. This will provide IT admins enough time to plan support for 5G when the technology finally arrives.

In essence, Android 11 not only promises stronger privacy and security features for the users but has also made huge strides to support current work-from-home scenarios.

SureMDM supports Android work profiles, allowing IT admins to remotely set up and manage Android devices from a central console. Additionally, 42Gears is also working towards providing zero-day support for Android 11. Businesses can start using new features almost instantly after release.

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