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MDM unveilings from WWDC

Posted in: Business, Education

Apple held their “What's New in Device Configuration, Deployment, and Management” WWDC session yesterday to highlight the upcoming mobile device management (MDM) features with iOS 11, tvOS 11 and macOS High Sierra. There’s some great new features on the way, and Jamf is committed to supporting these features once they are available in the fall.

Device Enrollment Program (DEP)
The big news for DEP this year is a new way for organizations to manually add devices to their DEP portal. Organizations can now add iOS and Apple TV devices that were purchased outside of the traditional DEP-supported channels. This can help schools who receive donated devices, or businesses who purchased devices through a non-DEP source. IT admins simply need to plug those devices into Apple Configurator 2.5 (currently in beta) and those serial numbers will be added to the organizations’s DEP portal. This means you can now erase the device and the next time the device turns on, it will go through the DEP steps during setup. Note: there is a 30-day provisional timeframe where an end user can still remove the device from DEP to prevent accidental enrollment. This will make IT admins lives much simpler and increase adoption to DEP.

Apple School Manager
The portal for schools managing people, devices and content was updated with a new streamlined user interface, and added support to PowerSchool for SIS integration. Apple is continuing to improve the experience for schools by directly integrating the Volume Purchase Program (VPP) into the Apple School Manager portal. VPP in Apple School Manager is also improving how multiple content managers can purchase apps and manage tokens by introducing license and location transfer.

macOS High Sierra
Mac management is becoming even more powerful with new features coming to High Sierra. New MDM configurations will include: 802.1X ethernet configuration, management of firmware passwords, user account management, FileVault key escrow, restrict iCloud desktop and documents, and finally the ability to delay software updates for up to 90 days so IT can test new software before deploying. New MDM commands to shutdown or restart macOS will also become available. All this will equate to a better management experience when High Sierra ships this fall.

APFS
Underneath macOS High Sierra is a brand new file system, known as Apple File System (APFS). This replaces the decades-old current file system. APFS will improve the speed and performance of macOS while introducing new features for developers, like snapshots. APFS will keep support for existing FileVault models, while providing a converter for existing encrypted drives. Passwords and recovery keys are preserved and encrypted. APFS will ship as the default file system in macOS High Sierra starting this fall.

iOS 11
Tethered caching is a new feature that will enable IT admins to leverage a Mac to help prepare a large number of devices by caching data and reducing network traffic. New configuration payloads and options for iOS 11 include: AirPrint restrictions, prevent system app removal, prevent VPN creation, allow automatic joining of classes in Classroom, and a new DNS proxy configuration payload. These new MDM features will be available with iOS 11 in the fall.

Apple TV and tvOS 11
MDM for Apple TV was added this spring with tvOS 10.2 and Jamf has already introduced these features with Jamf Pro 9.98. New to tvOS this year will be the ability to customize enterprise apps by applying a managed app configuration. Managed app configurations can be found at AppConfig.org. In addition, IT admins can also specify the Home screen layout, hide apps, configure AirPlay security and prevent modifying device name. tvOS 11 will be available this fall.

Challenge accepted, Apple
During the session, Apple issued a challenge to MDM providers to help make IT’s life easier. Well, challenge accepted. Meeting the needs of each IT department and individual user is why we built Jamf in the first place. We will continue to focus on improving our products and solutions to help organizations succeed with Apple.

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