BlackBerry is readying its customers for the so-called "Enterprise of Things" era by adding new capabilities and enhancements to its mobile device and application management platform, Enterprise Mobility Suite.
Gone are the days when IT departments only had to worry about managing a desktop or laptop PC. Today, that responsibility extends to smartphones, tablets, wearables and an ever-growing number of Internet of Things (IoT) devices.
The latest version of BlackBerry Enterprise Mobility Suite now offers support for wearable devices from Ubimax and Atheer. Both companies are known for their smart glasses, which can be found on factory floors, repair bays and other industrial and business environments. Additionally, administrators can now create policies that offer greater control over Apple watchOS and Android Wear devices, including location-based restrictions.
Also new is the ability to securely access business data on unmanaged Windows 10 PCs and Apple Macs using the BlackBerry Access component. Additionally, the solution enables organizations to manage and secure their Office 365 mobile applications using BlackBerry Unified Endpoint Management (UEM).
For businesses that want to gauge the effectiveness of their mobility programs, BlackBerry now offers IT managers a way to determine if their users are really making the most of their devices.
"The new BlackBerry Analytics gives IT managers and developers insight into how workers use their applications," wrote director of Enterprise Product Marketing at BlackBerry, in a June 20 blog post. "You can now track daily and monthly usage, device type, user engagement for your custom applications, third-party Dynamics applications, and also BlackBerry Dynamics applications (such as BlackBerry Work, Access, Connect, etc.), and more. Enterprises will be able to monitor and manage just which applications their employees are using, how they're using them and, hopefully, how to make them more productive."
BlackBerry Workspaces, the platform's enterprise file synchronization and sharing technology, now supports in-line comments, @mentions and notifications. With the new DocuSign integration, users can add their signatures to legally binding documents and distribute them without printing them out first.
On the identity management front, administrators can now manage two-factor authentication from the BlackBerry UEM Cloud interface, a capability that also enables access to Enterprise Identity, the company's federated services solution, when the latter is set to an identity-as-a-service (IDaaS) configuration.
Businesses can now issue one-time passwords directly to mobile devices for added security while dispensing with seed file management. Meanwhile, IT administrators can configure VPN connections and assign users directly within the BlackBerry UEM control panel.
Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Datamation. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.