In an effort to improve Android rollouts, Google has launched a new deployment method that will allow admins to ship pre-configured devices directly to end users. Zero-touch enrollment, announced in a Thursday blog post, aims to make deployments “more seamless and secure.”

The zero-touch enrollment method will improve the process for both admins and employees, Google’s post said. Admins will no longer have to manually configure devices, as they can make sure management and corporate policies are in place and settings are configured before the device is shipped.

Once users get the device, it should be ready to go out of the box, the post said. All they need to do is simply sign on to access their work data.

SEE: Hardware purchasing task list (Tech Pro Research)

In order to use zero-touch enrollment, an organization much purchase devices from Google’s zero-touch carrier partners, the post said. Starting today, zero-touch enrollment will be offered for Google’s Pixel phone through Verizon.

“For our business customers, deploying new devices and services securely with the ability to enforce device-specific policies is critical for protecting proprietary information and an organization’s brand,” Ryan O’Shea, vice president of National Business Channels with Verizon Wireless, said in the release.

Google also noted in the post that additional hardware partners include Samsung, Huawei, Sony, LG Electronics, Nokia Phones, BlackBerry, HTC, Motorola, Honeywell, Zebra, and Sonim. Huawei’s Mate 10 and Sony’s Xperia XZ1 and XZ1 Compact will receive zero-touch enrollment support in the next few weeks, the post said.

In addition to Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, BT, Deutsche Telekom, Softbank, and Telstra
 all plan to offer the enrollment method as well.

In terms of what software can be used in the configuration process, Google’s post specifically pointed out that EMM tools from VMware AirWatch, BlackBerry, MobileIron, IBM, SOTI, G Suite, and others will be supported.

Other enrollment methods will continue to be supported, and admins can mix and match the methods depending on their organization’s needs, the post said.

The 3 big takeaways for TechRepublic readers

  1. A new deployment method from Google called zero-touch enrollment allows businesses to pre-configure Android devices before shipping them to users.
  2. Employees will be able to use their devices out of the box, simply signing in to access their company data and get to work.
  3. The Google Pixel phone on Verizon will be the first device to support zero-touch enrollment, but more hardware and carrier partners are coming soon.