Jamf Now makes app distribution a painless process by integrating with Apple's Volume Purchase Program (VPP). The Volume Purchase Program options can be a bit complex at times and Jamf Now is here to help you take advantage of the best deployment method.
Deploy Apps with VPP
Apple's Volume Purchase Program (VPP) provides the best way for organizations to centrally purchase and deploy apps at work. When purchasing an app from VPP, there are two types of licenses that you can choose from: Redeemable Codes & Managed Distribution.
1. Redeemable Codes
When you purchase apps with this license, you will receive a spreadsheet containing redeemable codes which you can then provide to your users. Ownership of the app is given to the Apple ID that redeems the code. Think of this like "gifting" apps to employees. While you can email codes to employees, Jamf Now will not distribute redeemable codes.
2. Managed Distribution
When you purchase apps with this license, your organization can assign apps to an employee's Apple ID over the air while retaining ownership of the app. In order to take advantage of Managed Distribution, a Mobile Device Management (MDM) like Jamf Now is required.
Jamf Now and VPP Apps
Link your Volume Purchase Program to Jamf Now and all of your apps will automatically sync to Jamf Now. In order for an enrolled device to receive apps, the user must accept the VPP invitation.
By default, Jamf Now will automatically invite newly enrolled devices to receive VPP apps. When your end users see this popup on an iPad, iPhone or Mac, they'll simply agree to the terms and type their Apple ID password to receive the app. VPP Invitations can also be sent manually from the VPP section of apps.
Apple ID Required. Until Now.
Ever since Apple introduced the iTunes Store for consumers in 2003, all purchases have required an Apple ID. This Apple ID requirement carried forward to consumer Apps and even to VPP apps with Managed Distribution. But 2015 marks a big year for VPP app deployments because Apple introduced a way to deploy apps without an Apple ID. That's right, no Apple ID required.
iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 El Capitan
With the release of Apple's latest operating systems for iPads, iPhones and Macs, Jamf Now can now assign VPP apps directly to an enrolled device without requiring a VPP invitation or an Apple ID. Previous operating systems (iOS 8 and OS X 10.10) will still work with the traditional VPP invitation and Apple ID assignment method.
How to Select a Deployment Method
By default, Jamf Now will use this new device-based assignment method on eligible devices. This method is preferred for shared-use devices or deployments where creating an Apple ID strategy may be too time consuming. With device-based assignments, an iPad or iPhone running iOS 9 or a Mac running El Capitan will simply see apps deploying without any Apple ID requirement. A VPP app license is required for each device.
Jamf Now will continue to send VPP invitations to iOS 8 and OS X 10.10 Yosemite devices to assign apps to the user's Apple ID. You can choose to turn off device-based app assignments in your VPP settings if you'd prefer to use this method for all devices.
Using the VPP invitation to an Apple ID is generally best for 1-to-1 deployments where a single person uses a device or in scenarios where a user has multiple devices (i.e. iPad and iPhone). Assigning an app to an Apple ID allows your user to receive the app on multiple devices with that Apple ID logged in while only consume the one license.
For any users that have already linked an Apple ID to VPP, that method will continue to be used even after upgrading to the latest operating systems.
Pros and Cons
Using an Apple ID for VPP apps ensures that employees with multiple devices don't require multiple licenses for each device. Apps assigned to a user's Apple ID will appear in the purchase history for that Apple ID and the device will be able to automatically update the app (if automatic app updates is enabled in the device settings). This deployment method does require that you invite the user to receive VPP apps and the user must accept with an Apple ID and password.
Using the device-based method for VPP apps is the easiest way to deploy apps without any extra steps (VPP invitation or Apple ID) required by the user. This deployment method requires an app license for each device, regardless of whether those two devices are used by the same person. Apps assigned directly to a device will not appear in any purchase history and the automatic app updates will be managed by Jamf Now. Apps assigned directly to a device will not be included in an iCloud or iTunes backup.
Jamf Now makes app distribution a painless process by integrating with Apple's Volume Purchase Program. And while new operating systems are always exciting, recent enhancements introduced in iOS 9 and OS X 10.11 El Capitan allow apps to be assigned directly to devices, no Apple ID required. This new deployment method for VPP apps makes supporting your Apple deployment even easier than before.