Top tools for BYOD management

MobiControl and Afaria lead the way in five-vendor test of MDM tools

When we tested mobile device management (MDM) last year, the products were largely focused on asset management - provisioning, protecting and containing mobile devices.

What a difference a year makes. The products we compared in this round of testing have much stronger controls of specific smartphones and mobile operating systems, plus features like location-based tracking, usage tracking, two-factor authentication and sandboxing of personal and corporate identities.

Of the five MDM apps we reviewed, SOTI's MobiControl was very strong and understood specific phones and OS platforms very well. Tangoe had very strong enterprise-focused management features. Newcomer Webroot is promising, but still has work to do to catch up to the others in our test. SAP's Afaria, which we tested last year, sported a new, almost radical makeover that's a dramatic improvement over their last edition. Venerable LanDesk has added MDM to its desktop management suite, and while the installation phase gave us moderate willies, we came to appreciate the product's device controls, easy policy management and reporting.

Overall, MobiControl and Afaria tied for first place in our test, with Tangoe not far behind.

Watch a slideshow version of this story.

The specific purpose of our test was to examine mobile device management. However, it's important to note that all five vendors offer MDM as well as a variety of other optional applications. These additional features were not tested.

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