Mobile device management software serves a variety of purposes. On the most basic level, it gives you an inventory of the devices on a corporate network. As technology progresses and we become more reliant on mobile devices to conduct basic business transactions, enterprises are providing their employees with mobile devices to manage both their personal and professional lives. Since these devices are designed to go just about everywhere with you, you need to take additional steps to preserve company data and make sure your employees aren’t violating terms of use on their devices.

Mobile device management software, or MDM, gives you control over the devices on your network. When a new device is enrolled, you can apply security measures, set up restrictions, share data, track downloads and applications, or view usage history. Most platforms give you some degree of all of these features, although some will charge more or require premium memberships to unlock all of them. These tools are helpful for information technology (IT) departments and managerial operations because you can use them to track activity and maintain the integrity of corporate data. Some popular MDM software options include Soti MobiControl, Microsoft Intune, and 2X MDM.

Mobile Device Management Software: What to Look For

What you want from your MDM will largely depend upon your organization’s goals. However, there are certain features that are commonplace among these platforms, and if you know what you want before you start reviewing your options, your shopping will be a lot easier.

Operating Systems
If your organization doesn’t practice the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policy, this will be much easier to determine because you’ll probably give your employees the same or similar devices. This means that their operating systems will probably be the same, and you can choose a platform that covers your one primary provider. If you do offer the BYOD option, you can bet that your employees will use different operating systems and devices.

When you choose an MDM, see if it matches Android, iOS, Windows Phone or BlackBerry operating systems. Make sure it’s compatible with the operating systems your employees are using.

Some MDM platforms have license limitations, while others offer bulk discounts when you purchase licenses for a certain number of devices. Because prices are constantly changing, we didn’t go into pricing details, but you should definitely look at the load capability and pricing structure of your mobile device management software provider. This is particularly important if you’re in the middle of a growth spurt because you’ll want to make sure your IT department only has to use one solution for all devices.

This is a big factor, particularly in corporate environments. Not all management options give additional security measures, and some only protect against certain types of threats. If your organization deals with privileged or private information, make sure your MDM does too.

You’ll want to make sure you can configure your privileges and user accounts for different roles within your organization, particularly if you’re going to be implementing your MDM on a large scale. Different employees will need access to different information, and using one blanket platform to control all devices on the network won’t give you the flexibility or specialization your organization will need long-term.

App Management
Using applications significantly simplifies mobile functions. However, many apps request access to private data and are given windows into personal information. This can mean worms or hacking tools, which can reach corporate records just like on a computer. When you pick your mobile device management software, make sure you can manage app downloads and settings as well.

Oftentimes, your enterprise will also have personalized apps for employees. Making this available and customizable on the network is possible with many platforms.

Mobile device management software can simplify a lot of data sharing and communication mechanisms within your organization. Because your employees will be using mobile devices regardless of what your policy states, creating an open-door, tolerant policy can help build employee relationships and show investment in your workforce. However, in order to make sure your employees have access to all the information they need and aren’t abusing privileges, MDMs lend structure.

2X MDM Review

2X MDM was created to give you control over corporate data on your company’s mobile devices. This software allows you to see into both company- and employee-owned mobile devices, so you can make sure your employees are complying with your company’s security policies and protecting company data. This mobile management software can be used by Android and iOS operating devices.

There are a number of features integrated into the 2X MDM platform. One feature gives you the ability to divide devices according to the device owner’s department or by the type of device. This allows you to look at all of the tablets at one time, for example. Any policies you set up can be applied to the group of devices or owners that fall into that category. App management is available through this MDM, so you can monitor for inappropriate applications and then whitelist or blacklist apps as you see fit.

2X also gives you remote lock and wipe capabilities. These allow you to quickly protect a compromised device from third-party access when you don’t physically have it in front of you. You can choose to erase data from the device or change the password, making it inaccessible to anyone but you. Even before you encounter data-compromising situations, you can set up means for enforcing strong password policies across the board. That way, you don’t have to go on a device-by-device basis to apply these standards.

Another benefit of this mobile device management software is the ability to set up location tracking. You can keep track of every mobile device on your network and store a comprehensive history of their locations. You can even trace connected mobile devices and refine your tracking parameters based on your preconfigured settings. You can keep this log of locations for office hours, so you know where and when your employees have been out in the field.

2X MDM provides you with visibility and monitoring capabilities for your workforce. It can help you save money and minimize risk from employees who rely on mobile devices. You can leverage some of the tools to protect privileged information and increase your representatives’ capabilities by using the location tracking. If you’re looking for a means to better monitor, track and protect your employees’ mobile devices, 2X MDM is a viable option.

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AirWatch Review

AirWatch Mobile Device Management gives you the ability to manage a variety of devices within your business. It was designed to address growing mobility management challenges, all through a centralized administrative console. This mobile device management software offers control over multiple operating systems and platforms, so you can customize access privileges and keep track of all the devices on your network.

This MDM addresses a number of the newer mobility management issues. It allows you to take a look at all of the devices enrolled in you network from a single console. You can then update settings remotely to secure them and change configurations. You can use this mobile device management software with Apple iOS, Android, Blackberry, Symbian, Mac OS, Windows PC, Windows Mobile or Windows Phone devices. In a nutshell, AirWatch covers all employee-owned, corporate-owned and shared devices on virtually any operating system.

The directory services integration (AD/LDAP) allows you to set up groups based on employee or device roles, allowing device management to mimic to your corporate structure. The console itself is web-based, so it will integrate with your existing company systems. You can get to it at any time from any location.

You can choose to set up each individual device with either an administrative or end-user clearance. An authentication process is necessary to approve applicants, after which, depending on their status, they will receive the proper restrictions for apps and content.

You can set up profiles to clarify your settings, then assign the appropriate profiles to different users or user groups. You can also automate these settings, so when a new employee is enrolled under a certain title or group, the employee’s devices will receive the appropriate device settings. Settings include Wi-Fi restrictions, VPN, passcode limitations, email and application blocking devices.

AirWatch Mobile Device Management gives you the ability to control a variety of devices using different operating systems from one console. It helps you maintain oversight and control over your company’s devices, so you can protect your data and make sure your employees aren’t abusing their privileges. The MDM software has a number of other custom features, which include real-time dashboards, terms-of-use configurations, device commands, and messaging and reporting settings.

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BlackBerry Enterprise Service Review

BlackBerry Enterprise Service 12 (BES12) server software is a comprehensive mobile device management platform capable of managing not only your BlackBerry device, but Android and iOS operating systems as well. This MDM is designed to help you manage your content and applications, while also providing security measures and integration.

This mobile device management software gives you the ability to handle your complex mobile environments, for both enterprise and bring-your-own-device (BYOD) based networks. You can easily separate personal and professional content on a device, while still maintaining the basic user experience you expect from your device. You can also containerize your applications to manage everything from a central console.

BES12 features options for deploying your BlackBerry Balance container and Android devices. While the most advanced features cater to BlackBerry, you can still take advantage of the advanced security measures and content protection systems on other operating systems. Android and iOS users can still leverage the new self-service portal, which is designed to make the most of your end-user experience by offering dynamic support options. If you are a BlackBerry owner, you can also manage BlackBerry 12 devices in high-security environments. This version supports BYOD enrollment.

You can expect to receive comprehensive multi-platform device management tools through BlackBerry Enterprise Service 12 server software. It will create security measures for all three operating systems mentioned above, as well as provide a secure workspace and give you a private, personal space on your device. You can customize your level of security and control the system through the flexible platform. You can also choose to launch and handle your business-related applications separately from your personal apps. The platform is fairly straightforward and intuitive.

Despite its fairly restrictive name, BlackBerry Enterprise Service 12 server software gives you the features you’d expect from MDM software on a few operating systems beyond just BlackBerry. You can choose different licensing types to fully tap into the BES12 capabilities, and you will need to download the newest Client Access License to unlock these features. All in all, it is a safe and reliable platform for keeping your devices secure.

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Globo Review

Globo Mobile Application Management, or MAM, is a simple and flexible mobile device management software option. Using this platform, you can manage both custom and out-of-the-box mobile apps. You can also control all necessary functions from the workspace secure container. From here, you can manage ongoing privacy and security policy compliance.

This mobile device management software uses a web-based admin console. Apps do not need to be uploaded through your employees’ app stores, like the Apple Store or Google Play Store. Instead, you can deploy them directly through the secure container to your employee-owned or corporate devices. It is easy for you to manage all of your mobile operations from the web-based console. You can set up new configurations, sync up the latest app versions, decommission bad or dangerous apps, or just view usage information and details from this one source.

From the workspace, you can use this mobile device management software to apply chosen settings and configurations across multiple operating systems. Mobile Application Management is compatible with iOS, Windows Phone, Blackberry and Android devices. For all of these operating systems, monitoring and tracking will take place in real time, and any updates or security changes you implement will be immediately deployed. You can also set up alerts for app usage or activity.

Globo uses containerization to simplify the deployment process and create a unified interface for enterprise apps and data across the board. The single sign-on mechanism (SSO) gives you control over all of your different operations from a single console, so you don’t have to log in to multiple platforms to manage everything. It utilizes a cross-platform, dual-persona solution, which means that the new trend of BYOD can still be used in your network policies and protection processes.

Globo Mobile Application Management is a customizable and simple mobile device management software option that you can use to help protect your employee devices and company information. It includes both standardized and customizable mobile environments, so you can set up different configurations, depending on the user or group. It’s a relatively comprehensive and intuitive platform for meeting your enterprise needs.

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MaaS360 Review

MaaS360 mobile device management is an MDM platform created by Fiberlink, which is an IBM company. This mobile device management software gives you visibility into and control over all devices entering and exiting the enterprise. You’re able to apply MaaS360 to company-owned devices, as well as those that fall under the bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policy.

This software is engineered to simplify your mobile management processes. You can quickly and effectively deploy your configurations, as well as look at device activity and control access privileges. Documents, applications and mobile devices will all fall under the MDM umbrella, which creates a comprehensive network for iPads, iPhones, Windows Phones, Blackberries, Kindle Fire and Android devices.

The enrollment process using MaaS360 is relatively streamlined. You’ll need to select services and configure the device enrollment settings, but afterward, you can send requests via email, text or custom URLs. You can also take all of the devices on your network and authenticate them against Active Directory/LDAP, SAML or a one-time passcode. Enrollment can take place in individual or bulk processes, and once you’ve created the appropriate setting for your network, you can apply and modify default policy settings.

Using this mobile device management software, you can set up accessible use policies and EULAs as well. These can be implemented on existing or new devices within the network, and the same authentication processes can be applied to devices using these contract agreements.

One of the biggest benefits of using MaaS360 is the ability to integrate and centrally manage all mobile devices. The unified console lets you configure contacts, wireless settings and profiles over the air. You can also approve and cleanse new devices as they enter the network. Distribution and management of corporate or public applications is also simplified, which makes sharing easy.

MaaS360 mobile device management gives you a relatively comprehensive platform for maintaining visibility over the devices in your network. All enterprise devices can be managed to maintain your corporate policies, and you can quickly set up or change your configurations as new phones or tablets enter the network. This software has a streamlined means for monitoring, managing and reporting on mobile device activities within your corporate environment.

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McAfee Mobile Security Review

McAfee Mobile Security is a mobile device management software from one of the more recognizable names in security. This product operates similarly to the basic antivirus software platform you might use on your PC, but it is engineered specifically for portable devices using Android operating systems.

As soon as it is downloaded, this mobile management software will scan your device and run through security risks. It’s a device-specific software, so unlike some of the other products in our lineup, it doesn’t give you visibility into all of the devices on your network. Instead, it’s designed to provide a reliable, reputable protection mechanism for individual devices. This mobile security program is particularly effective at protecting important identity information.

The mobile security software will scan your system and protect you against spyware, botnets, viruses and malware. The real-time technology scans for malicious codes running through SD cards, apps and files. McAfee guarantees no malware or infections will reach your mobile device. You can also protect your information by setting up a password to keep other users from accessing your data.

This MDM has app alerts and multi-user app profiles, so you can create safe zones for other users on your device. Essentially, you can manage what apps are visible and available to anyone other than yourself. This can be managed with a password. The alert mechanism will give you a heads up if the app is requesting more access than is necessary, and you can view reports and determine whether or not trust that app. There’s also a SMS and call filter, so you can block incorrect numbers, spammers or multimedia messages.

If your phone gets lost or stolen, you can use your phone’s GPS or SCREAM feature from any browser to track it down quickly. You’ll also be able to lock, wipe, back up, restore or even use the CaptureCam option. The CaptureCam will take a snapshot of whoever is using your phone and email it to you with the device’s location.

McAfee Mobile Security is an extension of McAfee’s antivirus software, and it provides a number of helpful features for protecting your device from theft or other users. This software is a good way to protect your company’s network. That being said, it isn’t made to give you the in depth oversight of other MDM software in this lineup.

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Microsoft Intune Review

Microsoft Intune has a wide range of mobile device management capabilities. The platform gives you cloud-based control over mobile devices and personal computers at an individual or business-wide level. Intune helps your business give your employees access to corporate materials while maintaining a fully secure system.

This mobile device management software option has mobile application and device management tools for accessing corporate data, applications and resources on almost all devices. These tools can help you maximize your employees’ productivity and make sure they are preserving the integrity of your data. You can set up privileges based on your enrollment and compliance policies, so the right employees get access to the right data when they need it.

Intune is compatible with many different operating systems, not just Windows-based ones. It will work with Android and iOS devices, in addition to those that run on Windows and Windows Phone.

The software’s platform helps to simplify your administrative duties by giving you a single management console to work from. This information is protected on the cloud and accessible from virtually anywhere. You can also access the platform at your office through integration with the System Center 2012 Configuration Manager. Both of these options provide you with the tools and accessibility you need to oversee your employees’ devices and make sure everything on the network is up to date and safe. Intune also offers line-of-business apps in its Intune app wrapper.

As a Microsoft product, Intune gives you a higher-level of management capabilities for Office mobile apps than other MDMs, and you don’t need an existing infrastructure to manage your permission settings and apps. The cloud feature gets rid of the need for new hardware to accommodate your administrative demands.

Microsoft Intune mobile device management software has a number of helpful tools for integration. On the platform, you can set up a consistent experience across different device types, and all data will be backed up or managed from the cloud. The flexible licensing agreements give you a number of options for enrolling devices and making sure all your employees’ machines are covered under your MDM umbrella.

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MobileIron Enterprise Review

MobileIron Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM) is a mobile device management software option that gives you and your employees access to the apps and content you need, without sacrificing safety. This MDM helps you maintain privacy and security for any phones or tablets on your network, and it includes support of bring-your-own-device programs. It’s designed specifically to help your IT department keep the necessary tabs on all components of your company’s network.

EMM has features that cater to both the end user and your company’s IT department. The platform gives you full control over apps, content and devices, so you can secure and manage all necessary settings and information. When you’ve given your IT team clearance to do so, they can release corporate data to the end users, and your employees will have instant access from virtually anywhere.

You can secure a variety of mobile devices on the EMM platform, including smartphones, laptops and tablets. With this software, you can automatically set up configurations for Wi-Fi, VPN and corporate email. If an employee or device violates any terms you’ve set up for network usage, you can choose your remediation actions. For remediation, you have options like sending notifications or wiping the device’s corporate information, which won’t affect any personal data on the device.

The application management features helps you and your IT team oversee the whole application lifecycle. You can choose which apps are available through the app store, secure existing applications and contain corporate apps versus personal ones. By the same token, you can release docs to your employees according to their permission settings or grant them access to the corporate intranet. Email attachments are encrypted, so they can only be viewed with authorized applications. This protects them from prying eyes and hackers.

MobileIron Enterprise Mobility Management focuses on delivering MDM capabilities from an IT perspective. This software has three primary components that manage policy, security and configure employee devices to fit your settings. This is all done using a smart security gateway. The platform helps you monitor and maintain all devices on the network and gives you customization and firewalls that make sure the settings are tailored to your business model.

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Soti MobiControl Review

Soti MobiControl is a mobile device management software option designed to support a wide variety of devices using different operating systems. The product is tailored toward businesses, so you can centrally manage and maintain corporate and employee devices. As an administrator, you’ll be able to configure your groups, settings and access privileges to fit your organization’s security goals.

This MDM addresses the needs of a large and diverse audience at both a business and personal level. The administrative control panel can be accessed from anywhere and on any device that has a web browser. It allows you to securely view your data, as well as configure and edit your settings.

The security of your organization’s mobile devices can be managed through the corporate sandbox feature. This lets you set up universal blocks to restrict access to unwanted applications, such as games, social media or inappropriate content. The application catalogs make sure that all of your employees can access both your company’s applications and any approved third-party apps you might require on their devices. All of your corporate devices can be handled from the sandbox on your own personal device.

This mobile device management software is intuitive and simple. It operates well across the many operating systems on your employees’ devices, thanks to integration with virtually every major provider. The settings can all be managed from one workspace, and if you do encounter any problems, Soti has a help desk to help you troubleshoot. The company has remote support technology, as well as live chat options, which save time.

MobiControl also offers a number of reporting options, so you can track performance and analyze trends in device use. You can use live information to monitor the status of your network’s devices and to ensure their security. This allows you to maintain a clear picture of their current condition, which can be helpful in recognizing and resolving issues before they become too big.

Soti MobiConrol offers a variety of custom components for managing multiple mobile devices. All of this management can be done by an administrator from any device with a web browser. This, coupled with its ability to work across operating systems, makes it an easy software solution to use.

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Spiceworks Mobile Security Review

Spiceworks Mobile Security and Free Mobile Device Management is powered by MaaS360, just like one of the other MDMs in our product lineup. MaaS360, the parent company, is a product of Fiberlink, which is a subsidiary of IBM. With this platform, you can manage your inventory, reporting and monitoring on mobile phones and tablets in your network. You can also set up device control options and other useful features, although some of these aren’t available through the free version.

This mobile device management software is designed as a cheap, basic alternative to other MDM software. It is built specifically for information technology (IT) departments managing multiple devices on a single network. The platform will let you track all of the phones and tablets on your network, regardless of whether the mobile device uses an iOS, Windows Phone or Android operating system. This inventory feature gives you a quick snapshot of the device’s operating system and carrier.

This MDM will also let you look at the apps your employees install on their devices, so you can flag potential problems early. You can also set up mechanisms to alert you of jail-broken devices or out-of-date operating systems, as well as disabled passcodes. All of the information is in a format that can be transferred to a custom report, so you can share it with your IT department or use it to better understand the activity of your employee users.

Spiceworks’ biggest selling point is its price. While it’s not as advanced as some of the other software options in our lineup, it still gives you visibility into network activity and devices. Beyond the free version, you can purchase additional upgrades to secure your fleet of mobile devices or go with the Premium option.

Spiceworks Mobile Security and Free Mobile Device Management is a basic option for keeping track of mobile devices on your network. The Premium version gives you more advanced safety and security features, if you decide to take it to the next level. If you ever run into issues, you can use the online chat service to sort everything out.

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