IT admins need to get ready for Apple Watch to hit the workplace

“We’re days away from seeing the first batch of Apple Watches appear on wrists, and IT admins need to get ready for them to make an appearance in workplaces,” Adrian Kingsley-Hughes writes for ZDNet.

“That said, there’s not a lot that IT admins can do to control the Apple Watch in the workplace,” Kingsley-Hughes writes. “In fact, the latest update to the Apple Configurator – Apple’s mobile device management tool – only adds one restriction related to the Apple Watch. Called ‘Force Apple Watch wrist detection,’ this new restriction can be used to prevent notifications from being sent to the Apple Watch unless it is being worn.”

“Is this enough?,” Kingsley-Hughes writes. “Yes. Since the Apple Watch isn’t a standalone device and instead relies on the iPhone, if the watch is separated from the handset, it then no longer poses a security risk.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: In just a few days, the world will change.

26 Comments

  1. It’s unrelated, but still important: what will be the ramifications of the Apple Watch in an educational environment.

    Obviously, the potential for cheating will have increased but will the educators’ sophistication and familiarity with the device be sufficient to thwart any of this.

    Along with the cool stuff comes nefarious attempts to misuse it. I’d bet you begin hearing discussions on this matter.

    Just a thought, absent my own Apple watch 🙁

    1. On the other hand, maybe Watch will change education. Why do we need to memorize as much if we have the internet on our wrist? Education could finally shift modes from a stress on having data in your head to what it is you can do with data, as access to data becomes ubiquitous. How you can creatively synthesize facts and generate original observations and unique perspectives with the understanding that you always have access to the internet. Then again, I guess original perspectives can be dowloaded too.

      1. I suspect education will eventually change to teach students how to process information rather than memorize dates and such. After all, students were required to learn Greek and Latin long after those languages were no longer needed to read classic literature. Those who would argue you are not reading The Iliad unless you are reading the original Greek continue to exist even today; however, most would agree little is lost in translation. Similarly, the argument over memorization versus access has at least thirty years to play out.

    2. Wrist watches with data calculators have been in existence for over 30 years. My experience from that time was that, for tests where calculator was not allowed, students were require to leave their digital wrist watches at the door, with the teacher / proctor, and collect them after the exam. Same goes for pocket calculators and any other electronic devices that included the calculator functionality. Today, that includes mobile phones, music players and similar digital devices.

  2. No way. Instant block on all firewalls, routers, network drives and wifi. Keep the watch out of enterprise. It brings nothing to corporate America. Not a damn thing but distraction.

    1. I will disagree with Itgod under these conditions. I believe, properly managed, the Watch will reduce time (annoyances), thereby improving workflow.

    2. Health insurance industry will offer discounts to companies that have a certain number of employees on Watch. This is already occurring with the Fitbit, and soon will be possible with the Apple Watch.

    3. “It brings nothing to corporate America. Not a damn thing but distraction.”

      Kinda like having internet access on corporate computers? I’d imagine the man hours wasted on personal browsing and shopping are a hell of a lot more distraction and waste than an Apple Watch.

      What are you afraid of, anyway?

    4. There are some companies that care about their employees. Some companies have a project where they are trying to figure out a way to assist a worker who happens to be working on their own. Bio metrics is one way of doing that. The watch could provide bio metric information on an employee’s health and send out a notification to a command center if the employee is in distress. Combined with GPS signals from the iPhone, the company could send in aid to the worker. Think in terms of fireman, policeman, security guards, farmers and ranchers, anyone that is in a position to work on their own or to be isolated that could need immediate help.

  3. “there’s not a lot that IT admins can do to control the Apple Watch in the workplace”

    IT shouldn’t be trying to control or block the Apple watch, they should work with their employees to get the most out of it. That’s how IT SHOULD work.

      1. I’m an IT doofus and I’m the guy who finally killed off the Blackberry Enterprise Server and made the iPhone the corporate standard. (Yeah, a few outliers insist on Android, there’s no accounting for taste.)

        1. If some of the employees you support really want to use Android and there’s not a specific security risk, then they should be able to use it. If people are allowed to use what they like, they will be more productive. If their feelings toward Android are not that strong, then I would encourage them to use the more powerful, easier to use and more secure (my opinion) iPhone.

  4. We have already been told that any room in our building where cellphones are banned will also include Apple Watches. No Fitbits, either.

    In those locations we can’t have any camera-enabled devices, so any laptop with a built in webcam is out, too.

      1. Actually, they are rooms where company-propreitary software is written and tested.

        Also, my daughter works at an advertising agency where an entire floor of their building is a no-camera, no-cellphone floor.

        Competition is tough, and industrial espionage isn’t a joke.

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