Answering a genuine enterprise need, Jamf has launched a preview of cloud-based software that should make it easier to share iOS devices, such as iPads, within teams.
Making iPad and iPhone sharing better
This is a long-needed solution for many businesses, as existing tools to share iPads are imperfect and require constant logins to the device and applications. While Apple has made it somewhat easier to share iPads in work and school environments, it’s fair to say the solution isn’t quite yet seamless.
The company is working to respond to this need with a new Single Login workflow supported by Jamf Setup and Jamf Reset (themselves launched in 2018). The workflow appears to be yet another enhancement made available by the company’s recently announced support for Microsoft Azure.
Bringing partnerships together
Apple’s Enterprise and Education Product Manager, Jeremy Butcher, last year hinted at improvements to ID management on Apple devices when he described user enrollment as a balancing act between effective security protection and enterprise management. To illustrate the point, he ended his talk with a demonstration of Azure being used to set up an iPhone for secure business use.
A few months later and Azure is helping Jamf deliver a solution that balances device security with real-world enterprise needs. It does so by letting a user’s cloud ID credentials be used to instantly provision and reprovision an iOS or iPadOS device. The great advantage is that it relies on a single sign-on and doesn’t require the IT department to actually handle the device — it’s all managed from a console-based system.
How is this useful?
So, how could this be used?
A company might have 100 iPads it regularly shares between 150 members of staff. With this tool, a staff member can sign into a shared iPad with their unique cloud ID and all data, documents, and any apps assigned to that user will be downloaded and made available.
The deployment is highly secur,e as the information is removed and replaced when another user logs in.
It’s a solution that should be of use to many enterprises that already rely on shared devices — think airlines, logistics, and field services teams, for example.
“Jamf believes there are two types of iPhone and iPad deployments in business: devices for general productivity and devices for specific workflows. Devices for productivity are assigned to an individual and used to enhance daily efficiency. Devices for specific workflows are used for a purposeful activity, and often shared amongst users, like care providers, flight attendants, or sales teams,” said Josh Jagdfeld, senior director of partnerships, Jamf.
The solution makes it much easier to secure devices in your fleet as permissions, data, and app access are controlled on a per-user basis. It facilitates companies working to provide employees with personalized access to apps and means users don’t need to remember multiple passwords to access all those apps.
The workflow also allows device assignments to be audited for security and inventory management using the admin console, which lets management see which user is assigned to a device, and what apps and privileges are given to each user.
Made for sharing
Another pain point addressed in this release is what happens to the device and a user’s data when it is returned to the sharing pool. This is one of those common problems that can lead to data protection and security errors as people fail to reset their devices when they return them. Jamf Reset offers a one-touch tool that swiftly removes information from the devic,e making it ready for the next user in seconds.
“Modern warehouse operators use mobile computing to improve every area of their operations, and Apple helps us deliver on the shop floor. Because of this powerful platform, we can offer more efficient workflows, instant communications, error elimination, safety and regulatory compliance — all with a great user experience,” said Nate Brown, CEO of EVS, in a statement from Jamf.
Jamf Setup and Jamf Reset apps require Jamf Pro and are available on the App Store.
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