There’s a lot of enterprise mobility documentation on the web these days—which is great, because this wasn’t always the case. This article serves three purposes:
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- If you’re new to EMM, you can learn the basics.
- If you’re already familiar, this can serve as a place to find key vendor resources.
- If you want to hear our world-view on various topics, you can find some of our favorite articles in here.
This article gets updated every few months, most recently on October 17, 2017.
Essential EMM blog posts
What’s EMM all about and why should you care? In the mobile/cloud era, it’s just how we do things.
I wrote a whole book about EMM back in 2014, but it’s out of date now. To get up to speed, check out this series on the current state of EMM. It’s from last year, but it’s still accurate.
- Part 1 covers what’s mature
- Part 2 outlines the stages of adoption
- Part 3 is about the spread of EMM
- Part 4 is why to get started
- Part 5 identifies issues we’re still dealing with
This days, EMM, identity management, desktop management, desktop virtualization, and more are blending together into something people are starting to call “workspace” management.
If EMM applies to the mobile part of the “mobile/cloud era,” identity and access management is one of the most important technologies for dealing with the cloud part (at least from the end user perspective). See:
Understanding mobile app management
I often hear that mobile app management (MAM) is still a confusing topic for new EMM customers, and this has long been an important issue to me. For get a handle on MAM, see:
- My three-part guide to mobile app management:
- Apple’s iOS management protocol needs to get better for BYOD. Here’s why and what they could do.
- What does the Microsoft Graph API for Intune mean for the rest of the EMM market?
- For more on MAM features that are built into iOS and Android, head to the AppConfig Community.
Thoughts on mobile apps
We don’t cover app the nuts and bolts of native app development, but we have a lot of thoughts on apps, as well as a few specific technologies that can help convert legacy desktop apps to mobile:
- Five things you need to know about creating and sourcing enterprise mobile apps
- Take apps to the next level by incorporating features unique to mobile devices
- Where are your enterprise mobile apps going to come from? Here are the top 5 options.
- Want to see where all the enterprise mobile apps will be? Most of them won't be in the office.
- Refactoring turns legacy software into modern apps
Moving on to devices and OSes, it can be informative to read the security reports and resources directly from Apple and Google. Check out:
- A look at the official iOS and Android security reports
- Apple’s March 2017 iOS security white paper (PDF)(We’re still waiting for the iOS 11 version.)
- Apple’s Face ID white paper (PDF)
- Source.Android.com security overview
- Googles Android 2016 Security Year in Review (Blog post | complete PDF)
Mobile threat defense is a still-emerging technology, involving third-party security agents. I just recently wrote a complete guide:
Apple and iOS MDM resources
Most of Apple’s official iOS and macOS MDM documentation is pretty easy to find these days:
- iOS Deployment Reference, macOS Deployment Reference, and Apple TV management overview
- Apple device configuration profile key reference
- Over-the-air profile delivery and configuration
- Mobile device management protocol reference (This is newly-public, it used to be vendor-only!)
- Device Enrollment Program, Volume Purchase Program, and Apple School Manager
- Apple Configurator (Free in the Mac App Store.)
- Ground Control is a third-party product that’s useful for dealing with large numbers of DEP-enrolled and supervised devices.
iOS updates are usually announced in June and roll out in September with new iPhone models, but sometimes big updates with new EMM functionality come out in the spring. Here’s the most recent information:
- Apple WWDC 2017: Here are the enterprise management updates for iOS 11
- EnterpriseiOS.com, run by Aaron Freimark, has lots of great information about iOS management and changes when they come up
- Podcast about iOS 10.3, tvOS, and more, by Aaron Freimark and Russ Mohr
- Deep dive on iOS 11 in the enterprise - BrianMadden.com Podcast #131 (This time I invited Aaron and Russ on our podcast.)
Google and Android MDM resources
We all know the Android MDM story: Originally, Android didn’t have great MDM capabilities, so OEMs like Samsung added their own. Then in 2014 and 2015, Android for Work came along, and now it’s just called Android enterprise. Here’s all the basic information:
- The Android enterprise homepage lists supporting vendors and devices.
- Android enterprise help page
- Managed Google Play help page
- Android in the enterprise for Developers is more for EMM vendors and app developers, but there's tons of information to poke around in if you're curious. The same goes for the Android EMM Developers site. There's even a test device policy controller app you can play with. Also see Device Administrator documentation.
- Our article about recent Android enterprise provisioning options, Android zero touch
- Enterprise features by version: Android 5.0; Android 6.0; Android 7.0; and Android 8.0.
- Recently, I’ve learned about some excellent Android enterprise guides (plus other guides and blog posts) from Jason Bayton.
Samsung Knox is still providing EMM features that can be used alongside or instead of Android enterprise. See:
Windows 10 MDM and Unified Endpoint Management
Windows 10 brought Modern Management and support for MDM, and now a new trend (and confusing acronym): Unified Endpoint Management. Here are some recent blog posts:
- How Windows 10 co-management works with SCCM and Intune/MDM, and how third parties can use it, too
- Put your Windows 10 deployments on AutoPilot
And here are shortcuts to Microsoft’s documentation: