Google recently announced in a blog post that two new device makers have been added as partners of the company's Android Enterprise Recommended initiative. This program was developed by the search giant to make it easier for businesses to determine which devices are suitable for their operations. The two new partners to the Android Enterprise Recommended initiative are the Japanese tech firm Sharp and the San Mateo, California-based manufacturer Sonim Technologies. More specifically, the program has validated one handset from each of the two new hardware partners, which are the Sharp AQUOS SH 10-K and the Sonim XP8.
Aside from announcing its new hardware partners, the Android Enterprise Recommended program also mentioned that it has recently validated a number of new smartphone and tablet offerings from the initiative's current partners. These include the Xperia XZ2 and the Xperia XZ2 Compact by the Japanese device maker Sony; the Moto G6, the Moto G6 Plus, and the Moto Z3 Play by Motorola; the P20 and the P20 Pro from the Chinese tech giant Huawei; the Key2 by BlackBerry; and the Nokia 3.1, the Nokia 5.1, the Nokia 6, the Nokia 7 Plus, and the Nokia 8 Sirroco from HMD Global. The search giant also announced that for the first time, it has added two Android tablets, the Huawei MediaPad M5 8.4 and the MediaPad M5 10.8, to the list of devices approved by the program. This announcement increases the total number of devices certified by the Android Enterprise Recommended program to 39 and the number of hardware partners to nine.
In addition to making it easier for businesses to choose and deploy Android devices, the program also aims to increase the quality of Android devices and services. Before a handset or a tablet is validated, it has to satisfy a number of requirements set by the initiative including support for Android zero-touch enrollment. This feature makes it easier for businesses to deploy devices without manually setting up each unit. In addition, the handsets should also satisfy the minimum hardware requirements and for a minimum of three years, the manufacturer should also deploy the latest Android security patches within 90 days after it has been released by the search giant. Google noted that the response to the initiative has been largely positive, with 75-percent of the respondents stating that the program would play a key role in deciding which devices to buy for their businesses.