This document is currently incomplete due to unavailable information. It will be updated as and when it is possible to do so.
Android Enterprise Recommended is a validation program offered by Google for devices, vendors and partners launched in February 2018. The program currently focuses on devices, but will extend out later this year.
The goal behind Android Enterprise Recommended devices is to provide a simple, Google-recommended list of devices that meet a set of elevated enterprise-grade requirements. In doing this, there are benefits for both organisations choosing devices for business and the OEMs that take part.
Devices submitted for certification will be thoroughly tested against Google’s established best practices and common requirements. Some of those include:
- Minimum hardware specifications for Android 7.0+ devices
- Support for bulk deployment of Android devices including zero-touch enrollment
- Delivery of Android security updates within 90 days of release from Google, for a minimum of three years
- Availability of unlocked devices, direct from manufacturer or reseller
- Consistent application experience in managed proﬁles and on managed devices
.. and more. The full list of requirements can be found here.
This certification process is per-device rather than per-OEM, meaning each individual device an OEM releases will need to be tested and certified individually. This is important as an OEM can release devices targeting many audiences, such as HMD Global with their Nokia 1 and Nokia 2 or Samsung with their Galaxy J1; these are not intended for enterprise use and as such wouldn’t make sense to suggest otherwise with an OEM AER badge.
When buying devices for enterprise use, organisations need only look for the Android Enterprise Recommended badge to know the devices have been thoroughly vetted against the above (and more) best practices and requirements from the company that develops Android and the Android enterprise solution. It’ll help to ensure organisations align expectations (and potentially budgets) accordingly to ensure the devices being considered will:
- Be supported by the OEM for software/security patching for 3 years
- Meet the demands of typical enterprise use without worry of slowdown, incompatibility or other potential concerns
- Be available for purchase through multiple channels
- Act and behave reliably when being provisioned as a work-managed or work profile device
- Support Android zero-touch enrolment
Since the introduction of Android Enterprise Recommended, 5 additional devices have been added to the line-up, including 2 from Sony and 3 from Nokia. There are, and will continue to be, more added on a regular basis.
Notably absent from the program are Samsung and Zebra. While Google is expanding the program out to ruggedised devices and tablets currently and so will very likely include Zebra in the near future, Samsung are not joining the program despite invitation from Google.
Like the devices program, Google will be vetting EMMs and other solution vendors against a yet-undefined list of requirements and recommendations. Once this program goes live it should act as a replacement for the current vendor comparison Google display currently, which is no longer up to date.
Vendors will need to demonstrate an elevated level of compatibility for Android enterprise devices and services, for example supporting a minimum feature-set for optimal management and implementing new functionality within a set time depicted by Google.
Validated vendors will receive their own badge for marketing a promotional purposes to demonstrate heightened compatibility with Android enterprise.
Finally, Google will be introducing a validation program for partners and systems integrators. Details of this are currently unavailable but will be updated here in the near future.