Soon, your boss could be locking down the exact position of pre-installed apps on your company-supplied iPhone or iPad. A new feature in the latest beta of iOS 9.3 would allow employers to lock apps to the iOS Dock, or anywhere else on the device’s Home Screen.
The feature means that an employer-issued iPhone could require Slack and your company’s email app be locked to the dock of your iPhone — or anywhere else on the home screen — with no way for you to re-arrange the layout.
The details of the new feature are contained in Apple’s developer documentation for its upcoming iOS 9.3 release. (At 88 pages, it makes for perfect bedtime reading. It’s a great remedy for insomnia, trust me. -Ed.) The feature was first noticed by @stroughtonsmith.
iOS 9.3 enables MDM to enforce homescreen layouts, black/whitelist apps, and enforce notification settings https://t.co/fjOqfFYzY9
— Steve T-S (@stroughtonsmith) March 1, 2016
Company IT departments will need to be running OS X Server, in addition to Profile Manager and supervision configured on the device. Supervisors can then configure the layout of apps, and web bookmarks on the Home Screen.
Employers can also hide apps, even the default system apps, from employees’ eyes, and even block employees from downloading specific apps from the Apple App Store onto company-supplied devices.
Currently available only to developers, and public beta testers, iOS 9.3 is expected to debut later this month, alongside OS X 10.11.4, watchOS 2.2, and tvOS 9.2, sometime around the much-rumored March Apple media event.