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How Android 9 Pie serves up new benefits for the enterprise

The latest version of Android has several enhancements that bring stronger security to enterprise users.

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Android 9 Pie is notable for a number of improvements that will benefit enterprise users. The focus on artificial intelligence and security targets key needs for those thinking about deploying devices across their organization.

While every annual operating system update comes with a batch of new features, Android 9 Pie has several feature changes and innovations that should be of particular interest to the enterprise.

Leading with security

Google is pushing the security barrier even higher with Android 9 Pie. It’s another step in the continual hardening of the platform, with improvements like an improved model for biometrics and industry-leading hardware security capabilities like leveraging a phone’s tamper-resistant hardware.

Additionally, Android 9 Pie enables industry-leading hardware security capabilities to allow protecting sensitive data like credit card information using a secure, dedicated chip.  The latest version of Android also includes privacy improvements like TLS by default and DNS over TLS to assist in protecting web communications. IT administrators can also require different PINs and timeout rules for the different personal and work profiles running on the device, and set policies to further prevent data sharing across them.

Interface improvements

A key differentiator for Android in the enterprise is the work profile, which provides separation between work and corporate data and applications. With Pie, the work profile is even easier to access with a separate tab for apps inside the launcher. 

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Some devices are devoted to a single purpose, such as point of sale terminals or informational kiosks. On these devices, IT admins can show or hide elements of the Android interface, such as the status bar and navigation buttons, meaning that users can’t use the device for any other purpose. Enterprise mobility management providers can set a custom home screen, and populate it with the apps of their choice.

While notable for these and other features, the key point for enterprise decision makers is how Android 9 Pie is yet another move forward in Google’s continued investment into mobile security. Recent research from Gartner that looked at Android security protections produced a positive assessment of Android’s fitness for enterprise use.

Android 9 Pie launched on the Google Pixel family of devices, and is rolling out to phones and tablets in the Android Enterprise Recommended program. It promises to be a worthy upgrade for eligible devices and bundles in numerous enterprise APIs, features, and useful behavior improvements.

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