Important updates to VPP Managed Distribution Workflows

See what Apple's change in Volume Purchase Program (VPP) Managed Distribution means for IT administrators.

January 22 2015 by

John Miller

Since its introduction, Apple’s Volume Purchase Program (VPP) has continued to iterate and provide more and more functionality for organizations to use in their deployments. One of the most significant improvements has been the introduction of Managed Distribution, which provides organizations ways to redistribute content purchased from the iTunes Store, App Store, and iBookstore to users in their environments. Apple is continuing this trend by introducing a change in behavior for VPP Managed Distribution.

Remove feature limitations

Starting February 3rd, 2015, users that are assigned new VPP assignments will no longer automatically download that content immediately onto their supervised devices. Previously, the users’ devices that had “Automatic Downloads” enabled would begin downloading apps as soon as the VPP assignment completed. 

This has been problematic for IT administrators; specifically those who want to take advantage of Managed App specific features. They were unable to utilize features that required apps deployed as managed—such as Managed App configuration— and could not control data access outside an app or remove an app automatically.

Define managed apps

With the change in behavior, administrators are able to configure their VPP assignments as normal, then explicitly define which apps in their App Catalogs will get deployed as managed apps or not, depending on the need. End users will still see apps in Self Service or will have them automatically install as managed apps when necessary.

This is a great step forward for managing app deployments, especially in an education setting where the benefits of Managed Apps are great. Rest assured that the Casper Suite supports these new changes without having to update.

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