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ISTE 2013 – iPad Setup and Management

June 25, 2013

Session Description: How does Apple Configurator and Volume Purchase Program work? Which mobile device management solution is best for you? Review scenarios and get answers.

Jim Crum

Jim is the Director of Technology for a couple of schools in Hawaii. He has just completed a full 1:1 iPad roll-out in one school, and is working on a very large deployment in another school for the Fall.

Jim is very familiar with the Apple Configurator, JAMF, and the Meraki MDM solution, and spent the bulk of his time walking through some of the settings in Configurator and how Meraki works.

One of the keys for Jim is the Meraki solution is fairly bandwidth intensive, which can be problematic for many schools. One person in the crowd indicated that they have only a 1.5 Mb connection for their schools! (Whoa! Hard to imagine that still exists today)

Jim uses Meraki AP’s because they like to throttle things like Youtube and other bandwidth intensive apps at the AP level – which is an interesting way to look at it.

The reason Jim uses JAMF is they want to self-publish apps, and books without having to go through the App Store, and this feature is not available to them with the Meraki MDM. In his opinion – Meraki works just like Configurator, except that you don’t need a physical computer – the rest happens in “the cloud” The Meraki system is free, so long as you have at least one Meraki AP, and may be a good solution for a small deployment.

The only advice Jim gives re: MDM solutions is to check out demos, trial versions, define the policy and weigh analysis.

Although he does say that the iPad really causes a lot of local network traffic.

One more thing to note, the Volume License Program is a little complicated, but it’s worth the effort for the discount levels when you purchase 20 licenses of an app.

Todd’s note: I thought the session was okay. Even though we had large screens, Jim’s graphics and images weren’t sized so you could see what they were. He was able to help everyone understand what is possible with the tools. Also of interest – had lots of “issues” with IT guys. Finding it interesting that this “battle” is still happening, and the “solution” I’m hearing the most is the IT Director should be a teacher.



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