ManageEngine Adds IOS to Device Management Service

ManageEngine, the IT management software arm of Zoho, is adding iOS devices to those supported in its Desktop Central management service.

Desktop Central is a hosted service that IT administrators use to manage desktops and servers. With Tuesday's announcement, IT administrators will also be able to manage iPhones, iPads and iPods through the Desktop Central Console.

Administrators will be able to remotely lock devices, erase data on devices, reset passwords and erase corporate settings.

They'll also be able to enable simple or alpha-numeric passwords, restrict features and applications, configure email accounts, enable Exchange Active Sync, and configure VPN and Wi-Fi settings.

Desktop Central also offers asset management features, letting administrators track things like certificates, apps and profiles installed on devices, as well as details on password compliance. They'll also be able to view information about the devices such as OS version, serial number and available capacity.

ManageEngine expects to add support for Android devices soon, said Raj Sabhlok, president of ManageEngine.

The company is entering a crowded field of developers offering mobile device management (MDM) services. "We approach MDM a little different than the niche providers of MDM," said Sabhlok. "When we offer MDM support, it's going to be through a common interface [our customers] have been using for a while with the Desktop Central product."

He said that customers don't want to have to use a separate tool to manage mobile devices, which some of the new providers of MDM services require.

Other options for MDM offerings come from BoxTone, MobileIron, Zenprise and Fiberlink.

The iOS management features now come included in the Desktop Central Professional and Enterprise versions of the product. Pricing for the services start at US$545 and $645, respectively, for 50 computers and one administrator. In addition, each phone managed through the software costs $20 per year. Volume discounts may reduce the price per phone.

Nancy Gohring covers mobile phones and cloud computing for The IDG News Service. Follow Nancy on Twitter at @idgnancy. Nancy's e-mail address is Nancy_Gohring@idg.com

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