On Tuesday, VMware released AirWatch Express, a cloud-based mobile device management (MDM) solution that aims to simplify device management in the enterprise. According to VMware, AirWatch Express helps configure Wi-Fi connectivity, applications, and email, as well as encryption and device security.
AirWatch Express is built on the same platform as VMware's existing VMware AirWatch product. The core difference is that it takes fewer steps to get it up and running, and it requires little to no training to get set up with.
Blake Brannon, vice president of product marketing for end-user computing at VMware, said that AirWatch Express could help organizations manage their mobile workforce "without the need for technical knowledge or additional IT staff."
VMware's core AirWatch product is more of a full enterprise mobility management (EMM) platform, helping an enterprise manage all of their mobile assets. AirWatch provides additional functionality around container management and content collaboration, for example, whereas AirWatch Express seems to be geared toward a more simple approach to MDM.
SEE: BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) Policy Template (Tech Pro Research)
As such, AirWatch Express could be a good fit for SMBs, or other organizations with small IT departments. The growth of mobile is being felt in companies of all sizes, and MDM solutions are becoming a necessary part of a strong mobile strategy.
AirWatch Express integrates with a company's existing email system and directory services to more quickly get new users up and running. Apps can be pushed automatically, or users can be allowed to select from a self-service app catalog. Admins can set up "blueprints" for each employee use case to make individual deployments even easier in the future.
In terms of security, it offers device encryption, password setup, and the ability to block certain apps or settings for specific users. If a device is lost or stolen, it can be remotely locked or wiped from AirWatch Express. Real-time dashboards show the status of individual devices under management.
AirWatch Express is available for iOS, macOS, Android, and Windows 10. Pricing begins at $2.50 per device, and it is available now. However, interested companies can sign up for a free trial on the AirWatch Express website.
The 3 big takeaways for TechRepublic readers
- VMware launched AirWatch Express, a new MDM solution that offers a simpler alternative to VMware's existing AirWatch EMM solution.
- Because of its simplicity, AirWatch Express could be a great option for SMB customers, while still providing security, email, and connectivity features.
- The growing number of mobile devices in business, whether BYOD or corporate-owned, is making MDM and EMM solutions a necessary part of nearly every IT department.
- Apple/FBI battle highlights IT blunders and need for strong mobile device management (TechRepublic)
- MDM for Android devices: What your business needs to know (ZDNet)
- 10 mobile security myths that need debunking (TechRepublic)
- Stress-reducing MDM tips for businesses managing Apple devices (ZDNet)
- How to create and deploy an MDM blacklist with Miradore (TechRepublic)
Conner Forrest has nothing to disclose. He doesn't hold investments in the technology companies he covers.
Conner Forrest is a Senior Editor for TechRepublic. He covers enterprise technology and is interested in the convergence of tech and culture.