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Device Enrolment Programme - DEP at KRCS

In March 2015 the eagerly awaited Apple ‘Device Enrolment Programme’ went live in the UK via KRCS.

Since it’s announcement in November 2014 there’s been a building demand for the service that DEP has to offer, but what exactly is DEP and what will it do for your Apple devices?

What is DEP?

In the era of ‘Old IT’ deploying new devices was a time consuming and often a technically challenging process. It involved the IT department either configuring and installing software packages on each device or if you were well prepared deploying a large pre-configured ‘image’. In the era of ‘New IT’ with an explosion of mobile devices, it makes sense to burden the IT department with as little pre-configuration work as possible, to the extent where they may actually never even touch the device itself. Apple’s DEP is the tool which allows you to do that for your Apple devices. All you need is a DEP account and a 3rd party Mobile Device Management (MDM) solution, then your DEP registered reseller like KRCS can do the rest.

What does DEP do?

The Device Enrolment Programme allows you to automatically enrol devices in your MDM during the initial setup and activation of iPads, Macs and iPhones, but unlike previously available MDM enrolments it cannot be removed from iOS devices. If the device is erased it will simply enrol again during the setup process reapplying apps and configuration previously set up in the MDM. DEP will also allow wireless and automatic supervision of iOS devices is desired, thereby enabling extended device management options and silent app deployments granted to supervised iOS devices. Macs and iOS devices can also benefit from a streamlined setup procedure by choosing to skip steps of the built-in setup assistant.

Key DEP facts:

  • To join the programme go to deploy.apple.com to start the process
  • When registering for DEP you will need the KRCS DEP reseller ID: 1AE4C0
  • KRCS can only enrol Apple devices originally purchased from KRCS in DEP
  • DEP supports Mac OS and iOS devices
  • Only institution-owned devices can be enrolled in DEP
  • DEP requires iOS7 and above or Mac OSX 10.9 Mavericks and above
  • You can nominate more than one source of purchases if required
  • DEP registration is FREE
  • Only devices purchased after March 1st, 2011 can be enrolled in the program 
  • To benefit fully from DEP you will need an MDM solution
  • Enrolling existing devices in DEP will require erasing and redeployment to benefit fully
  • Devices can be removed from DEP at any time, but cannot be re-enrolled 

Where to apply for a DEP account

Applying for a DEP account is easy. For business simply go to deploy.apple.com and for education go to school.apple.com

For Business

By going to deploy.apple.com, you will be met with an enrol now link. This will lead you to a page that offers you a choice of DEP and the Volume Purchase Programme. Selecting the DEP link will bring you to a standard sign up page where you simply fill in the specified details.

See images below as to what should be displayed.

DEP Application

For Education

By going to school.apple.com you are welcomed to a page that looks similar to a regular Apple ID login screen. However underneath you will see a link that says; Not Enrolled? Enrol your institution now. By clicking this you are met with a simple sign up page asking you to fill in your relevant information. 

See images below as to what should be displayed.

DEP Application Ed

What is Mobile Device Management (MDM)?

An MDM is a service either hosted on your network using an existing server or in the cloud. KRCS would recommend Lightspeed’s Mobile Manager or Jamf Pro depending on the ongoing requirements.

Once you join your Apple device to an MDM (enrolment) your device receives a small text file from the MDM (profile) which effectively turns settings on and off automatically on your device or configures managed accounts for email, calendars etc. For example, a common setting deployed by an MDM is to turn off Game Center on institutionally owned iPads, but the benefit of doing this via an MDM is that you can turn it back on in an instant on hundreds of devices. MDM is also the simplest method of deploying apps to devices in conjunction with Apple’s Volume Purchase Program, also available via deploy.apple.com

Working in conjunction with DEP, an MDM will allow you to predefine the settings for devices and the apps that should load onto them before the devices have even been switched on for the first time, and when those devices are turned on by the user they will experience a streamlined process on configuration and installation that requires no intervention at all from technical staff.

Do I still need Apple Configurator for iOS device preparation?

No, but it depends on your personal deployment as to which method suits your needs. KRCS would always recommend DEP in combination with a great MDM as the most efficient way of deploying iOS devices, but it does rely on the devices being manually connected to a wireless network for activation and MDM enrollment. There may still be circumstances where manually connecting a significant number of devices to a protected wireless network is less efficient than using Configurator to apply such settings in bulk. It should, however, be noted that devices registered for supervision in DEP cannot be supervised using Apple Configurator.Apple config & DEP

DEP in action

Manage MDM Servers

Manage Servers

Manage Devices

Manage Devices

Manage Resellers/Suppliers

Manage Devices

For more information contact our education team | 0115 9851797 | edsales@krcs.co.uk

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