Google has announced a brand new tool coming for small-to-medium businesses called Android Enterprise Essentials. The service, as its branding implies, can also be applied to larger businesses. But the end goal is the same in either case. Namely, to provide protections for Android devices within an organization. Particularly where those devices wouldn't typically need advanced full-blown device management.
There are multiple reasons why this tool is going to be great for Enterprise organizations to consider. Not least of all, as stated by Google, the security risks to small businesses aren't always diminished by the fact that it's a small business. And small-to-medium sized businesses don't necessarily want or need to pay an arm and a leg for advanced security. Or for security that requires a lot of upkeep.
More to the point, some areas also have local laws, Google notes, that require protections for company data. And lost, stolen, or otherwise compromised phones can cause big problems for those organizations. Both in the short and long terms.
So what, exactly, is Android Enterprise Essentials?
Android Enterprise Essentials is the solution that the search giant is pushing out to address that. In effect, Google started by taking the key core features from its large scale Enterprise management offerings. And then it removed all of the extra fluff, often unnecessary for smaller businesses. So all that remains is the core functionality to protect devices that will be used in an enterprise capacity.
The key features noted by Google include requiring the device to have a lock screen and encryption. It also includes mandatory malware protection enforcement. Including enforcement so that Google Play Protect is always turned on. And those enforcements ensure sideloading apps outside of the Google Play Store is impossible too. Finally, Android Enterprise Essentials gives the company the ability to wipe all data from a given device.
Google engineered the service and those features to help prevent the loss of company data. Whether from prying eyes or malicious software — or if it's lost or stolen.
All of those features are applied to enrolled devices automatically. So businesses won't need to configure anything or dig into deeper management options. Meaning that no training is required. Devices can be purchased and shipped or given to workers with the persistent policies already in place.
When will this tool be available and where do you get it?
As of this writing, Google's Android team is hard at work with distributors to roll out its Android Enterprise Essentials. Specifically, that's through Synnex in the US and Tech Data for the UK. But it also plans to make the tool available elsewhere through other resellers. The global launch will be some time "early next year."