What iOS 10.3 offers the enterprise

The update to Apple's mobile OS expands on device management, bolsters security

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Ben Patterson / IDG

A lot of technical coverage about iOS 10.3 has focused on the introduction of APFS, a new modern file system that will eventually power all Apple products. APFS replaces the decades-old HFS file system that has been a staple for Macs and most other Apple devices. APFS is a key under-the-hood update that improves performance and security, even if it's largely invisible to most users. It's also significant for enterprises in that it does deliver some security advances.

But iOS 10.3 includes several key new features for enterprises and educational institutions that go far beyond just the new file system.

These are most important ones:

A new focus on Supervised devices

One obvious change in iOS 10.3 is the focus on device Supervision. Supervision (aka Supervised devices) refers to expanded device management that Apple provides for devices that are owned by an organization and aren't BYOD or mixed use work/personal devices. Supervised devices tend to be used in situations where security is key and/or user restrictions and pre-configuration are important. It's also designed for shared device uses, where multiple people might have the same device, as well as kiosk-like situations where customers, clients, or others may interact with a device and the device configuration needs to be maintained.

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