Australian enterprises managing large fleets of iOS and OS X devices will now be able to configure new iPhones and Macbooks to their corporate settings without having to unbox and prepare each device before use.
Apple’s device enrolment program (DEP) - which had previously only been available in the United States - seeks to streamline the management and deployment of corporate-owned Apple devices for both the IT team and end-user by automatically preparing the phone, tablet, or laptop for set-up and mobile device management.
It removes the need to manually configure iPhones, iPads and Macbooks, allowing staff to use the devices straight out of the box.
IT teams can assign user profiles before the iPhone is activated, link devices to MDM servers, and importantly, use the ‘zero-touch configuration’ tool to immediately configure apps and account settings when the device is first switched on.
The DEP will as of today become more widely available across the globe - including in Australia - and also through authorised resellers. It had previously been restricted to direct purchases.
To enrol in the program, enterprise IT managers need to create a DEP account - which requires information about the business - and a dedicated Apple ID specifically for the program.
Configuring the devices requires the IT manager to link the DEP account to an MDM server and assign devices to it. All future Apple hardware purchases can be set up to automatically assign to specific MDM servers.
Once the user profiles are assigned to the MDM servers, the device will be automatically enrolled in the MDM and configured to the company’s settings once the user completes a standard set-up process.
The IT team is also able to create different admin accounts to manage their Apple device fleet, supervise iOS devices wirelessly, and lock user devices into MDM for ongoing management.
The expansion of Apple’s program comes as the company attempts to expand ts influence into the enterprise market.
The consumer tech giant recently signed a partnership with IT services behemoth IBM to tackle big business, which will see IBM will resell and manage corporate iPads and iPhones, while Apple will also offer a support option under its AppleCare program directly for big businesses.
The pair also plan to develop more than 100 enterprise applications targeted at banking, retail, telecommunications, transportation, insurance and healthcare players.