Android is the world’s most-used platform for smartphones, which means it is also one of the most used platforms in the workplace. Employers, however, have often been reluctant to adopt and deploy Android phones as part of their system because of the security of the platform itself and the costs of managing such phones. Google has been steadily improving Android’s security to satisfy the former and it launched its Android Enterprise Essentials program last year for the latter. Now Google is expanding the availability of this offer to better protect smaller businesses in key markets around the globe.
Android Enterprise Essentials is pretty much the “lite” version of what Google offers its enterprise customers in terms of device management. It distills security down to the essentials, hence the name, allowing small and medium-sized businesses to implement basic mobile security features without requiring training or hiring additional IT staff. Google’s “small improvements with big rewards” spiel will definitely be music to SMB’s ears.
Android Enterprise Essentials covers security policies like enforcing a screen lock or preventing the sideloading of apps. Device management features include not just remotely wiping a lost or stolen phone but also automatically setting up devices that are handed off to employees.
This enterprise offering for SMBs was launched late last year and was limited to some resellers in the US and the UK. This year, Google is expanding the program’s coverage to three more countries and more resellers in the US and the UK. The list now includes Vox Mobile in the US; The Barcode Warehouse and Telserve in the UK; LDLC Pro, DAMS, and Saphelec in France; Brodos and Everphone in Germany; and, Synnex in Japan.
Android Enterprise Essentials is primarily aimed at smaller businesses, but Google says it can also be a good fit for larger organizations with simpler device management needs. That said, it would also prefer if those customers eventually upgraded to its more sophisticated and more expensive Enterprise Management solutions.