Consumerization of IT is one of the trends that’s driving BYOD in businesses today. We’ve all quickly grown accustomed to our own favorite device and smartphone and we’ve come to expect the ability to download the apps that we want from the various app stores. This is all great until the time comes – and it always does – that you want to connect your beloved personal device to corporate assets like email, web apps or maybe remote desktop. Then things get trickier mainly because of security concerns. IT can’t allow just any device to connect to corporate resources – there has to be policies that control access. Plus, it gets even more complicated by the fact that a user doesn’t just use one device. They often have several. It’s not uncommon for users to have a desktop for work and a laptop for travel as well as a tablet and a smartphone. Each device has different security and management capabilities making BYOD a real challenge for IT.
Microsoft has taken a people centric approach to device management by offering unified PC and device management, giving end users a more predictable holistic experience. Microsoft’s Windows Intune and System Center Configuration Manager uses a people plus device management model that enables different management attributes for each different device that an end user has. The combination of Windows Intune and System Center 2012 R2 Configuration Manager enables the organization to manage mobile devices like smartphones and tablets as well as on-premise and private cloud devices like laptops desktops and HP ProLiant servers. These new capabilities surface in the Configuration Manager console as Extensions for Windows Intune. If you don’t have System Center Configuration Manager, the cloud-based Windows Intune can manage Windows, Windows Phone, iOS, and Android.
Some of the new Windows Intune device management capabilities include:
- The Administrator can configure email profiles
- Support for the iOS 7 "Managed open in" capability controlling which apps and accounts are used to open documents and attachments
- Support for the administrator to remotely lock the device
- Support for the administrator to reset the device password
You can learn more about Microsoft people-centric management approach in Brad Anderson’s blog plus you can dig into the Microsoft’s latest Windows Intune announcements at New Enhancements for Windows Intune.