After launching in beta last year, Apple has announced that Apple Business Essentials (opens in new tab) is now available to all small businesses in the US.
The iPhone maker’s new service brings mobile device management (opens in new tab), 24/7 Apple support and cloud storage (opens in new tab) from iCloud (opens in new tab) together into flexible subscription plans.
Apple Business Essentials is designed to support SMBs throughout the entire device management life cycle from device setup to device upgrades while also providing strong security, prioritized support, data storage and cloud backup (opens in new tab). It begins with simple employee onboarding which allows a small business to easily configure, deploy and manage the company’s products from anywhere.
VP of enterprise and education marketing at Apple, Susan Prescott provided further insight on the company’s complete solution for SMBs in a press release (opens in new tab), saying
“Apple has a deep and decades-long commitment to helping small businesses thrive. From dedicated business teams in our stores to the App Store Small Business Program, our goal is to help each company grow, compete, and succeed. We look forward to bringing Apple Business Essentials to even more small businesses to simplify device management, storage, support, and repairs. Using this new service leads to invaluable time savings for customers — including those without dedicated IT staff — that they can invest back into their business.”
Apple Business Essentials
One of the most useful features in Apple Business Essentials is Collections which allows groups of apps to be delivered to employees or teams while settings such as VPN (opens in new tab) configurations, Wi-Fi passwords and more can be automatically pushed to devices.
To get started, employees simply need to sign in to their work account on their iPhone, iPad or Mac using a Managed Apple ID. Once this is done, they will have access to everything they need to be productive including the new Apple Business Essentials app from where they can download their organization’s work apps.
Managed Apple IDs for employees can be created by federating with Microsoft Azure (opens in new tab), Azure Director and later this spring with Google Workspace (opens in new tab) identity services. This allows employees to log into their business laptops (opens in new tab) using a single business username and passwords.
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Apple Business Essentials also works with both company-provided and personal devices and with Apple’s User Enrollment feature, employees’ personal information stays private and cryptographically separated from work data.
In addition to Apple Business Essentials, Apple has announced the launch of AppleCare+ (opens in new tab) for Business Essentials which provides organizations with 24/7 access to phone support and up to two device repairs per plan per year by individual, group or device. Employees can initiate repairs directly from the Apple Business Essentials app and an Apple-trained technician will come onsite in as little as four hours to get their devices back up and running.
Apple Business Essentials with up to 2TB of iCloud cloud storage starts at $2.99 per month after a two-month free trial while plans for AppleCare+ for Apple Business Essentials start at $9.99 per month.