1. Akshay Masand's Avatar

    Apple recently revealed a variety of changes and additions to its iOS device deployment and management tools for IT professionals in a bid to streamline mass deployments for large enterprise and education institutions. According to an in-depth report from TechCrunch, the changes made to Apple’s enterprise and education programs are wide-ranging and suggest the company is looking to make a major push in large-scale iOS deployments.

    Several of the additions and tweaks that were made to existing IT tools can be found through Apple’s iPhone in Business webpage under the IT deployment category. A Device Enrollment Program Guide offers a brief overview at some of the changes including updates to the Volume Purchase Program and Apple ID for Students Program.

    Among the device rollout features is a “zero-touch configuration” tool that can automate the Mobile Device Management (MDM) system over wireless communications. This is a large improvement over previous iterations of Apple’s deployment method, which required physical access with each device to set up. The supervision of deployed devices can also be accomplished wirelessly via the MDM server. Apple offers examples of turning off iMessage of Game Center on certain devices, Web content filtering and other system-level custom configurations. Wireless supervision can be enabled during the setup procedure.

    Apple notes that although critical device information can be seen through the MDM server, personal account information continues to remain hidden for user security purposes. Enrollment for the program has also been made easier with a new dedicated webpage called “Deployment Programs.” Though the site’s name has been updated from “Volume Services,” a temporary title used during Apple’s beta testing phase with select MDM vendors and institutional clients, its function of verifying qualifying businesses and educational institutions remains the same. Other services are also attached to the website to make new enrollments and management easier for the end user.

    A detailed rundown of the deployment program’s new toolset and protocols can be found in Apple’s iOS Deployment Technical Reference Guide.

    Source: Apple (PDF) via TechCrunch, AppleInsider

    Twitter: @AkshayMasand
    2014-02-28 07:27 AM