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We have deployed iPhones at work and are looking for a solution to mass-deploy and manage (with the app updates etc.) the apps on these work iPhones. Each iPhone is assigned to a user but we would like to easily deploy a standard set of work-approved apps. The difficulty is currently each device has an individual user's iTunes (AppStore) account associated with it. While a single iTunes login can be shared amongst the users of a household across multiple devices, we don't want to run afoul of any licensing issues in the workplace since there is no doubt some sort of unpublished device limit Apple has.

I don't think Apple has a multiple-user "site-license-type" company iTuns account we could sign-up for and lump our purchases into...is there? So there are 2 issues: centralizing the purchasing of the apps into as few accounts as possible plus a way to deploy, manage, update these apps. The Enterprise iPhone Configuration Tool can only deploy our own in-house custom apps signed by us once we get a developer license.

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5 Answers 5

To update my own question, there's a promising platform from Ondeego: http://www.tuaw.com/2010/10/31/enterprise-ios-app-distribution-made-easier-by-ondeego/

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Bah, looks like it's still for custom apps. –  user57308 Nov 3 '10 at 15:36

Have a look at MobileIron's solution (http://mobileiron.com/iphone/) in combination with an Apple Enterprise License. These seem to be a solution to your problem but are not yet available: - End-to-end management of in-house apps (coming soon) - Catalog of in-house apps with direct download (coming soon)

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A quick skim read of the iPhone in Business deployment guides here: http://www.apple.com/iphone/business/integration/ (on the right) talks of restricting app installation, querying installed apps, but no mention of pushing or deploying apps - either directly to the phone, or to iTunes - so from that I guess it's not possible (in a supported way).

Maybe third party software can help (I don't know of any).

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Here's a good review article with links to major vendors - Good, Airwatch, etc. I believe most of these have some sort of App distribution method baked in.

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Thanks for the link. We currently use the Good platform for secure messaging but alas, there is no AppStore-App distribution method. –  user57308 Oct 15 '10 at 22:12

I think you will need to purchase each app separately for each iTunes account. I do not know of any multi-user licenses for iPhone apps.

If you are talking about apps that your company creates or owns, you should be able to publish those directly to the devices with no problem.

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Purchasing each app separately is what we have to do now. Keeping them updated involves us visiting each device and having the owner put in their iTunes password which becomes cumbersome since we do not not want to know their iTunes password. Ugh. Thanks. –  user57308 Oct 15 '10 at 21:55

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