Apple tips its hat to the enterprise with new VPP Credit
Apple recently introduced mobile device management (MDM) for iOS as part of a new focus on enterprise markets. This is great news for both the companies that steered clear of iPhones and iPads until now and those that dove into iOS despite the enterprise limitations. One aspect of the move is especially welcome: Apple expanded its Volume Purchase Program (VPP) to create VPP Credit. Under the program, businesses can now purchase large volumes of apps in bulk through purchase orders (POs).
While iPads have been a mainstay of the workplace for years, companies struggled to manage work-related applications housed on each individual device. Initially, app purchases were conducted per user and individually charged back to the enterprise. Not only was this tedious, but the moment employees left an organization, they took all of the pre-installed, company-purchased apps with them. Organizations could lose out on hundreds of dollars per device.
The old VPP
In 2011, Apple implemented the VPP, which allowed users to purchase some apps in bulk and pay for the order under a single credit card, reducing the scattershot approach companies had to take before. Yet this program only allowed companies to purchase apps created by Apple and limited order numbers to 100 per purchase, causing problems for large companies with tens of thousands of employees.
Introducing the VPP Credit program
Now, with the VPP Credit, organizations can purchase thousands of apps from the App Store through a single PO, and then distribute those applications to users as needed. In this case, one purchasing manager can place an order for apps or books, and then distribute the applications either through redeemable codes or by emailing application invites through third-party mobile device management solutions.
The best feature of this program is that the company retains the purchasing licenses for each application. If employees leave, companies can reclaim apps from users’ personal devices and redistribute them to new users, slashing IT spend in the long run.
The VPP Credit also now allows users to purchase all apps within the Apple App Store, expanding the download potential.
Apple is not new to the enterprise, but until recently, the company struggled to meet the needs of large organizations. The VPP Credit solves yet another enterprise obstacle, making Apple a more viable business option. The program also has the potential to substantially boost app sales, since large businesses can now easily purchase a greater volume of apps without fear of losing out on the investment. In the coming months, expect to see Apple unveil even more enterprise features as it attempts to reposition itself as the number one choice for businesses.
If you have questions about a VPP Credit for your company, contact me at Sean_Cassidy@SHI.com.