Device management is an essential part of IT infrastructure.
Considering the massive amount of laptops, tablets, and smartphones used by the modern knowledge worker, securing mobile device usage has never been more crucial. Mobile device management (MDM) is integral to organizational productivity, profitability, and security.
Fortunately, consolidated IT toolkits are now available to help busy admins, MSPs, and CISOs do exactly that. Intune and Jamf are two incredibly powerful pieces of software that IT managers often use to oversee Windows and Mac devices, respectively.
Both leading cloud-based device management solutions can handle the management of multiple devices, including desktops, laptops, and mobile devices. With that said, the two solutions offer different sets of MDM features and capabilities based on IT department needs.
In this article, we’ll compare product specs before discussing when you should use both Intune and Jamf together. We’ll also reveal a cross-platform MDM solution for heterogeneous environments that has been proven to save both time and money.
What Is Intune?
Intune is a cloud-based enterprise mobility management (EMM) tool by Microsoft that helps organizations manage mobile devices used to access corporate networks.
It can help ensure employees access corporate data on their devices in compliance with the organization’s security requirements.
Intune ensures employees have access to the resources they need to be productive while keeping data protected at all times. It provides flexibility and control for securing private information, regardless of the device.
With Intune enrolled devices IT admins can:
- Maintain an inventory of employee devices with access to organizational resources.
- Configure devices to meet organizational security and health standards.
- Push certificates to enrolled devices so employees can easily access Wi-Fi networks or connect to networks using VPNs.
- Access user and device compliance reports.
- Wipe organizational data from devices that have been lost, stolen, or are no longer in use.
Intune subscriptions are licensed per user on a monthly basis. You can purchase Intune as a stand-alone product or as part of Microsoft’s Enterprise Mobility + Security (EMS) suite.
What Is Jamf?
Jamf MDM is a cloud-based solution for managing iOS and macOS devices. It’s an industry standard for managing Apple platforms: iPhones, iPads, iMacs, MacBooks, and Apple TV. Jamf helps admins set up, preconfigure, reset, repurpose, and recover Apple mobile devices and computers.
With Jamf, IT admins can proactively and effectively manage the entire lifecycle of Apple devices. This includes deploying software, maintaining it, distributing settings, analyzing inventory data, and responding to security threats. Jamf also offers end-to-end encryption using Apple’s own secure, native mobile device management.
Admins exclusively managing Apple products should also consider whether or not Apple Business Manager is a better MDM for their needs.
Intune vs. Jamf: A Comparison
The rise in hybrid work culture has seen an increase in the usage of mobile devices for work purposes. There’s a need for organizations to strengthen the security of the devices in order to protect every endpoint. This is where mobile device management (MDM) comes in.
As employees increasingly rely on their personal devices to complete tasks, there’s a need for organizations to enforce strong and efficient BYOD policies.
Here’s a guide on how to create a BYOD policy in your organization.
A good MDM solution is critical to efficiently managing devices and maintaining a solid security perimeter around organizational networks. In the table below, we’ll compare two of the most popular MDM solutions in the market: Jamf vs. Intune:
|Device Enrollment||A unified endpoint management (UEM) solution for exclusively managing Apple devices. IT admins can use the Jamf Setup and Jamf Reset applications to create a smooth user login experience. Exclusive to Apple devices only.||Helps manage both Windows, Android, and Apple systems. Relies on the Azure Single Sign-On in-built capabilities to offer IT admins a smooth enrollment process. |
Admins can also access several provisioning options after enrollment, along with sign-up options for new users, on the Enrollment Status Page (ESP).
|Security||Jamf offers a holistic security framework through automated policies and device settings. It has robust security features and stringent password policies, analyzing machine behavior and checking it against the malware database to identify potential threats.|
Jamf is also deeply integrated with iOS devices to allow for secure endpoint configurations.
|Intune relies on multi-layered decision-making to strengthen its security through Azure Active Directory Conditional Access policies. For macOS, it uses Firewall and Gatekeeper features to restrict access to suspicious applications. |
The endpoint detection and response (EDR) together with the Microsoft Defender Antivirus also add an extra layer of security by detecting and promptly notifying IT admins about malicious activities missed by non-Microsoft antivirus software.
|Application Management and Integration||Jamf manages applications through a five-phase lifecycle, namely sourcing, hosting, deployment, experience, and reporting.|
The software can easily be integrated with multiple other platforms such as Google, Microsoft, Splunk, and Freshservice.
|Intune manages licenses and location tokens to enable users to synchronize apps they’ve purchased from Apple Business Manager. It utilizes MSIX packaging for some applications to ensure they are up to date. |
Microsoft 365 recently released Cloud Policies that enable IT admins to create and deploy policies on self-service applications. This gives Intune extra customization options.
The TeamViewer Connector functionality allows for remote integrations, tracking, and secure access without the need for VPNs.
|User Experience||According to PeerSpot customer reviews, Jamf has a 4.7 rating. It allows customized deployment and granular-level restrictions for users.|
Its workflow automation and technical support also increases productivity and helps users to save time. The platform has a zero-touch setup for easy scalability.
Additionally, customers like the geofencing features which allow for policy implementation according to locations.
|Intune has a 3.9 rating on PeerSpot. Customers love its ability to integrate with Windows, Android, and Apple devices. Its general functionality in securing and managing devices is also quite impressive.|
|Pricing||Jamf offers two pricing options — the first for macOS and the other for iOS, iPad, and Apple TV management. |
Jamf starts at $3.33 per month through a yearly subscription. Jamf supports education and volume discounts.
|Intune has three pricing packages, customized to the needs of an organization.|
The solution starts at $6 per user, paid monthly.
While Jamf is a dedicated Apple MDM platform, Intune offers Apple devices support in addition to the other OS’s. Considering the heterogeneous nature of modern IT environments, it’s highly unlikely you will only have to manage one type of operating system. Depending on the nature of your system environment, either Intune or Jamf could be viable choices.
Intune vs. Jamf: Should You Use Them Together?
Organizations today have a blend of Android, Windows, iOS, and macOS. You may need to leverage both tools to effectively accomplish your device management needs. When used in tandem, both tools can help you to capture all the device management needs of your heterogenous work environment.
Interestingly, Intune and Jamf have already integrated together. The two platforms allowed for integration since Jamf doesn’t handle Windows systems at all and Intune hasn’t perfected managing Mac devices. Intune leverages Jamf to check compliance with various policies on macOS systems.
So, instead of a Jamf vs. Intune battle, you have a collaboration of the two platforms. Doing so will enable you to control nearly all of your organization’s devices.
Alternative Device Management Options
Notice we said “nearly” all devices. Unfortunately, neither tool provides endpoint management for Linux admins to manage users or devices.
In addition, Intune and Jamf leave gaps in identity management. Neither solution provides user management nor access control to an organization’s identity and access management (IAM) approach.
Translation: You’ll need additional software for deploying IAM to meet Zero Trust security and compliance standards. Adding additional software increases tool sprawl. IT tool sprawl leads to overspending, overwhelm, and incongruent information.
So, what options do you have as an alternative to Intune and Jamf?
There are plenty of top MDM solutions besides these two tools that you can leverage to manage your systems, mobile devices, and laptops. Other comparisons include Intune vs. MobileIron, Intune vs. SCCM, and Intune vs. AirWatch.
But the ideal solution is one that combines both system and IAM management into a single cross-platform solution: the JumpCloud Directory Platform.
With JumpCloud, admins can manage heterogeneous environments from a single, centralized point instead of several different tools, saving time and money.
Get Started on System and User Identity Management with JumpCloud
Are you ready to take a modern, cross-platform approach to IAM and MDM?
JumpCloud offers the best of both worlds. Not only does it allow admins to deploy remote Windows, macOS, and Linux system management but it also provides identity and access controls through LDAP, SAML, single sign-on (SSO), and RADIUS.
Securely manage your entire IT environment, including users and their systems, applications, servers, networks, and much more. This management is available regardless of end user choice of platform, protocol, provider, or location.