Apple WWDC19 Round Up: The New iOS Enterprise Features

Apple’s WWDC19 is finally over, and alongside Dark Mode, iPadOS and other headline grabbers, a whole host of new iOS enterprise features were announced for iPads and iPhones. These are the most important iOS enterprise features in the 13th release of Apple’s operating system.

iOS enterprise features for iPhones, iPads and Macs.
There are good reasons for business users to be excited about these iOS enterprise features, especially as the changes to iOS 13, watchOS 6, iPadOS and macOS Catalina seem to address most of the areas in our iOS 13 wishlist.

What’s new?

You can read all the changes at the iOS 13 preview page. But for those short on time, here’s a roundup of some of the features that will make the biggest difference in your enterprise.

User Enrollment

Balancing security, better user privacy and streamlined device management across the entire Apple product portfolio, User Enrollment is the latest change in MDM for BYOD. We have looked at the changes to Apple BYOD in another blog-post >> What Is User Enrollment?

Single Sign-On: iOS 13 SSO Extension

The new iOS 13 Single Sign-on (SSO) extension acts as the middle man that allows native apps and safari to authenticate with an identity provider.

Apple’s demo video of the single sign on extension at WWDC19 (skip to 44:44) shows how authentication requests are processed silently in the background. The iOS 13 SSO extension can also present a UI or load a web page.

The extension is enabled by deploying the new “extensible SSO MDM profile and associated domains”, meaning the iPhone and iPad will need to be managed by MDM (e.g. User Enrollment) in order for it to work.

Additionally, identity providers looking to build and deploy their own extension should watch Apple’s in-depth video on the iOS 13 SSO extension, called “Introducing Extensible Enterprise SSO”.

While it is still early days for developers, the iOS 13 SSO extension represents a further step towards a passwordless (and password-fatigueless) future in the enterprise (remember, consumers have a separate solution called Sign-On with Apple).

Shortcuts

In our iOS 13 wishlist, we argued that Shortcuts has great potential. Just some of the changes to Shortcuts can be seen here, with shortcuts that can now be triggered according to time and place.

Improved File Management in the Files App

In a long-awaited improvement to the Files app for iPad and iPhone, external storage will be supported.

iPad Pro owners, for instance, will be able to connect multiple external storage devices via USB or an SD Card attachment, intuitively manage files via split screen and even share folders via the iCloud Drive, as shown in detail on 9to5Mac.

And by preventing kernel access, Apple has found a solution to keep devices protected against malicious files.

Apple explained the updates to Files in detail at WWDC19, which you can rewatch. Some other important information includes connectivity support for SMB servers and the ability to manage access to folders via the Privacy tab in Settings. External drives will need to be formatted to either APFS, HFS+, FAT and ExFAT to be supported.

These improvements to file management and filesharing in Files – combined with new desktop class browsing and text formatting – represent a big boost to the existing iOS enterprise features available for iPad and iPhone users in schools, business and organizations.

Other iOS Enterprise Features to Take Advantage Of

Alongside these iOS 13 enterprise features that boost productivity and security, we also want to pick out the new ability to:

  • Silence unknown callers
  • Add attachments to calendar events
  • Optimize battery charging to reduce battery aging (which is great for any iPad kiosk devices that are connected to charge for prolonged periods)
  • Block senders across all Apple devices in Mail

iOS 13 will mark a – somewhat unexpected – big new milestone for smartphones in the company. Apple’s commitment to a sensible BYOD approach will convince many more people to make their smartphones an important part of their working life.


iOS 13 User Enrollment with Cortado

This free whitepaper looks at all changes for administrators and end users.

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