The use of iOS devices in enterprises has risen at a phenomenal rate. Ease of deployment in the enterprises and better security are the primary reasons for iPhones, iPads and Mac devices to be among the top choices for enterprise use.
According to a Techcrunch report, in the fourth quarter of 2015, the enterprise markets accounted for about $25 billion in annual Apple revenue for the year 2015, which is 40% more from 2014.” This trend has continued to persist since then.
Managing multiple iPhones and iPads in a BYOD scenario can often be complicated. Different users have different needs and ways of working, and that’s clearly depicted in the devices and apps they choose. It can be intimidating for enterprises to select from a huge choice of feature-rich MDM solutions for managing these employee-owned devices.
iOS Management support offered by Apple
Apple provides enterprises with the option to manage and secure both corporate and user-owned iOS devices. Some of the them are:
Apple’s Profile Manager is an application which simplifies the management of both Mac and iOS devices through creation of user profiles. Profile Manager can be used to track cellular data, monitor application licensing and VPN connections, remotely lock iOS devices and restrict users from tampering with settings such as AirDrop and iCloud.
Profile Manager has limited capabilities as it offers only basic management functionalities. Hence, arises the need for an extensive EMM solution that offers comprehensive remote management features, allows security policy enforcement and supports bulk updates.
Apple Configurator is a free, easy-to-use device management app, dedicated for Mac OS X. It easily integrates with third-party EMM tools and allows admins to import/export settings and share profiles with other administrators.
Configuration profiles can be installed on the devices in four ways:
- Pushed from iTunes Configuration Utility to a USB-connected iOS device
- Emailed to an iOS user
- Downloaded on an iOS device from a website via Safari browser
- Installed through Mobile Device Management (MDM) solution.
Apple Configurator Vs EMM solution
– An EMM solution can manage large number of devices. On the other hand, Apple Configurator can manage only limited devices at a time.
– An EMM solution has a wide range of management features which effectively add to the limited management capabilities of the Apple Configurator.
– An EMM solution can manage devices remotely whereas Apple Configurator only works with locally-connected devices.
42Gears EMM features for iPhones and iPads
Let’s explore in detail the essential features of 42Gears EMM solution to manage iPhones and iPads in an enterprise.
1. Blacklisting and Whitelisting Applications
This feature allows IT admins to blacklist or whitelist applications on the device such as App Store, Calculator, Calendar, Camera, FaceTime and Compass. Enterprises can use this feature in both Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) and Company Owned Personally Enabled (COPE) scenarios. It allows stringent app distribution policies to be enforced on user devices and provides access to only selected approved apps.
2. Cellular Data Block
This is a key aspect of iOS management offered by 42Gears EMM SureMDM. Organizations want to enforce strict data control policies for its mobile workforce so that they can monitor and control cellular data usage. SureMDM’s cellular data block feature allows automatic mobile data turn off once the user reaches the pre-defined data threshold.
3. Remote Screen Sharing
SureMDM allows remote screen-sharing of iOS device screens in real-time. This screen sharing feature is useful for resolving technical issues remotely and providing training to users.
4. Passcode Policies
Password compliance policies like password strength, password aging and multi-factor authentication ensure that mobile devices with access to sensitive data are protected.
Enterprises can secure the network access to applications over VPN network for its employees. A VPN profile can be sent from the MDM server to a managed iOS device to configure L2TP, PPTP or IPSec VPN connections. After devices are configured with VPN settings, they get automatically connected to the network through secure tunneling. This feature is useful for large organizations to protect sensitive data exchanged through applications. The VPN profile can include authentication details, such as username, password and certificates so that the user does not have to enter it every time while connecting.
6. Restriction Profile
A restriction profile allows admin to disable native apps and features in iPad and iPhones such as Camera, App Store, Screenshots, Web Browser, Siri and more.
7. Mail Configuration
This feature allows remote configuration of POP or IMAP email accounts on iOS devices.
8. Application Policy
Through this feature, applications can be silently pushed, removed or configured remotely on enrolled iOS devices.
9. Geofencing and Time fencing
Geofencing feature can help push policies or apps to the devices as soon as they enter a specific location. For example, an organization may disable camera feature when a worker enters a classified area.
Time fencing feature enables enterprises to restrict certain applications or device settings on BYOD and corporate-owned devices at specific time periods of the day. This helps enterprises counter the challenges associated with efficiency, security and productivity.
10. File sharing policy
Enterprises can securely distribute documents to iPhones and iPads using the Enterprise File Store. The required documents are first uploaded to the enterprise file store, a File Sharing Policy is created as a profile, which is then applied to the desired devices.
As more and more employees continue to use iPhones, iPads and Macs for work purposes, enterprises can use an EMM solution to remotely configure, and manage large of number of these devices, reducing maintenance cost and enhancing security.
Want to manage iOS devices in your enterprise? Click here for 42Gears EMM SureMDM free trial.
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