Difference Between Supervised and Unsupervised iPads

CaptureWhen I think of unsupervised, I immediately think of what my son would do if I wasn’t watching. BTW, if you’ve never seen the video about the kids in the picture its worth watching because it will immediately make you feel good about your parenting skills. Those kids were definitely unsupervised!

Apple’s definition of unsupervised is a little different. When you add devices to an MDM there are certain settings you can’t control unless the device is supervised. The way we supervise devices is by using Apple’s Device Enrollment Program (DEP).

You can add devices to our Meraki MDM if they aren’t in the DEP program, but the devices will be unsupervised. Again, this means their are certain settings you cannot not control.  You can learn more about adding devices in Meraki’s documentation. In the Meraki dashboard go to MDM > Settings > Restrictions. There you will see the settings you can control for both supervised and unsupervised devices.

Hopefully, Apple will continue to add options for controlling supervised devices. For example, it doesn’t really make sense to me why Apple provides a way (DEP) to prove that a school or business owns a device, but will not allow those organizations to keep users from setting a passcode. I understand the importance of a passcode in certain situations, but organizations should have the option decide whether or not users can set them. In education, it makes sense that a 1:1 iPad could have a passcode, though iPads that are shared between several students throughout the day should not. The MDM will allow you to clear a passcode, but that takes away from instruction time. Like I said, maybe someday…

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