Help managing app purchases in a business environment?

Discussion in 'iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by smiddlehurst, Nov 12, 2009.

  1. smiddlehurst macrumors 65816

    Jun 5, 2007
    Hi everyone, wondering if anyone could help me out on this one.

    We're looking at getting in between 5 and 10 iPhones for our senior management team and someone's raised the Excellent Question of how we manage their application purchases. Personally I'd like to lock 'em down and tell 'em to foxtrot oscar but apparently that's not an option. Neither is my prefered solution of having them setup iTunes on their own personal account and expense any purchases they make at the end of the month, too much admin apparently...

    My current plan is to setup iTunes on a single desktop in the office with an account registered to our group e-mail and with a company credit card registered to that account. Every iPhone can then be configured on that PC with that copy of iTunes and setup to use that iTunes account. The users will be given the password for that account and every time they make a purchase we get the e-mail recipet sent to the group account to be checked for anyone taking the proverbial (no, Real Racing is NOT a business critical app).

    Anyone have any better ideas for how to manage these things, or actually any business-orientated tips in general? I'm just used to my own personal iPod Touch and would rather have the plan in place BEFORE we place an order. All help much appreciated.
  2. BryceW331 macrumors newbie

    Nov 12, 2009
    Ames, Iowa, USA
    Here's a suggestion...

    There's definitely a way to lock down the iPhones, and even let them sync with their owner's own iTunes libraries.

    First of all, check out for tips and tools for deploying iPhones in a business environment.

    In particular, download the iPhone Configuration Utility. This application allows you to create a profile that can be installed on all of your company's iPhone's, or you can make different profiles for different phones. You can deploy them initially by directly syncing the new iPhones on your computer, and you can later update the iPhone profiles by e-mailing a new configuration file to the iPhone users (the iPhone will recognize the file and the user can tap it to install it from the iPhone mail app).

    With the iPhone Configuration Utility, you can configure almost everything on the iPhone... Name, Owner's Name/e-mail address, Company/Organization... You can even pre-configure company e-mail settings (to the point where all they need to do is put in their password); configure a company-wide LDAP, CalDAV, or Microsoft Exchange server; configure VPN and other types of security settings (including setting a required complex password instead of the default 4-digit numerical passcode); You can restrict/disable the use of built-in iPhone apps (e.g., the App Store, iTunes Store, mobile Safari, etc.); and you can even pre-configure company wi-fi settings and install any security certificates for accessing other company server resources. Basically, you can customize everything and pre-install certain applications. If you restrict the built-in App Store AND iTunes Music Store, the users won't be able to see the App Store or iTunes Store icons on their home screen and they can't sync with iTunes to install new apps, either; but they will be load new music/TV shows/movies/podcasts by syncing with iTunes (this does not pose a security threat, which unauthorized apps might). So, warn your users that they'll need to request new apps through you and that their own apps won't work.

    So... start there. Feel free to send me a message if you would like further assistance.

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