OEMConfig is Here!

Nov 8, 2018
Eric Stillman

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Eric Stillman is a Product Manager for Android and Chrome OS at VMware End-User Computing.

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Overview

Since the inception of mobile device management for Android devices, management capabilities have been based solely around device administrator. Because device administrator offered only a minimal set of configurations and restrictions, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) opted to build many of their own proprietary, value-added features into the device, above and beyond what Android natively offered.

Historically, OEM-specific features would require custom applications, platform signing, and cumbersome API integrations by the unified endpoint management (UEM) platform. Without a standardized way of implementing these APIs, customers experienced significant delays to access these features, and in many cases, the one-off-type features would never be prioritized or added to the product. As a result, UEMs struggled to fully meet the needs of all their customers.

With Android Enterprise, Android natively offers a wide range of capabilities, accommodating a vast number of different use cases and management modes. Although Android Enterprise helps to reduce the fragmentation amongst OEMs, there are still very specific features that different verticals or purpose-built devices require outside of the standard Android set. These features include advanced Wi-Fi policies, hardware or button configurations, granular settings controls, OS updates, and more.

With the introduction of OEMConfig, OEMs now have the ability to build advanced, proprietary management capabilities into their devices with zero-day support by all UEMs. OEMConfig is based around the AppConfig Community, which provides a standardized format for dynamically configuring applications as they are installed on the device.

How Does OEMConfig Work?

OEMConfig is an application that is built and maintained by the OEM and hosted on Google Play. The app would then be published to devices via the UEM and silently installed on the device using Android Enterprise. OEMConfig takes advantage of AppConfig standards by allowing the administrator to configure the OEM settings in a data-driven UI. Customized settings are delivered to the application during or post-install, and the application will call the corresponding, proprietary APIs on the device.

OEMconfig-1

OEMConfig Benefits

OEMConfig has significant benefits for customers, UEMs, and OEMs:

  • Day-zero support of all OEM features on all supporting UEMs
  • Standardized implementation and method of configuring device settings
  • No UEM console or agent application upgrades required to access new features
  • Single application per OEM
  • Reduced fragmentation across device fleet

OEMs in the AppConfig Community

OEMs can now join the AppConfig Community to be represented as a supporter of OEMConfig. Eligible OEMs are those who have developed and released their OEMConfig application. Once registered, the OEM will be featured along with their company logo on the appconfig.org member page. OEMs will also have access to the vast community of ISVs, EMMs, and more, as well as useful marketing materials. Sign up today at http://appconfig.org!

 

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