Apple devices in supervised mode: Advantages and differences

We'll show you the advantages and differences.

The security of corporate data is under constant threat these days, as it can be manipulated, overwritten, published or sold by unauthorized access by third parties. To give iOS devices more data security, Apple's Supervised mode is a special configuration mode that enables certain accesses to monitor iOS devices. This allows these devices to qualify for secure use in a corporate context, as strict guidelines for the protection of sensitive data can be adhered to without individual employees being responsible for this.

Supervised configuration can channel device usage for business-specific operations, increasing productivity and reducing costs while protecting company data and ultimately employers and their employees. This can prevent the loss of personal information and the resulting problems such as legal disputes, a damaged reputation or existential worries.


On which devices is the Supervised function possible?


The Supervised configuration can be carried out on any Apple device. These already have numerous hidden tools in their operating system that increase the security of the device. However, these are normally deactivated in non-supervised mode. The supervised configuration allows these functions to be enabled.

We'll show you the most important features of a supervised versus an unsupervised iOS device:

In supervised (managed) mode, mandatory apps are automatically installed in the background. If a user blacklists an installed app, it will be hidden (for iOS 9.3+ applications). Additional features include app notifications, an always-on VPN, APN, global HTTP proxy, web content filtering, managed web domains for password autofill on Safari, wallpaper customization, lock screen message display, home screen layout, kiosk mode and more. In Unsupervised (unmanaged) mode, mandatory apps are only installed if the user confirms this. If an app is installed that is on the blacklist, the device will be marked as non-compliant (for iOS 9.3+ applications).

How can my devices be set to supervised mode?


Apple devices can be manually set to supervised mode via the Apple Configurator, which requires a Mac or MacBook. One disadvantage of this is that the Apple Configurator requires a physical USB connection. Every time a device needs to be updated, reconfigured or handed over to a new user, it must be connected to the computer.

Of course, there is a simpler solution. A Mobile Device Management (MDM) like MobiVisor can do everything the Apple Configurator can do and much more. The biggest difference is that all commands and configurations can be carried out wirelessly. This makes management much more efficient in terms of time and costs. Especially with a large number of devices, management without MDM is almost impossible.


Apple Configurator or Mobile Device Management?


With Supervised Mode, Apple offers a solid foundation for the protection of mobile devices, which are now used in almost every company, be it a nursing service, a publishing house or a restaurant. However, device configuration can be a challenge, especially for medium-sized companies that are increasingly confronted with the need for global digitalization. If you are unsure which way is right for you, we at IOTIQ can help you overcome this challenge. Get in touch at any time.

Find out more about the use of Apple devices in the corporate context!