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Microsoft Endpoint Manager: UEM Software 2021

Microsoft Endpoint Manager, formally known as Microsoft Intune, is a type of unified endpoint management (UEM) software solution that allows enterprises to manage network endpoints. 

UEM has become an important enterprise tool as corporate networks have grown to become sprawling and complex, with connections coming in from virtually anywhere. In addition to mobile devices and the typical on-premise network connections, enterprises often need to oversee connections from remote workers, IoT devices and sensors, and cloud-based applications, among others. 

Being able to centralize and manage that oversight with UEM software has become increasingly attractive for enterprises of any size. Microsoft created its Endpoint Manager platform by combining its well-established Intune UEM platform with Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (ConfigMgr), which allows users to access both solutions from a single interface. 

This review will give you all the important details about Microsoft Endpoint Manager:

Unified endpoint management (UEM) software

UEM helps enterprises manage the mobile devices and other endpoints connected to the corporate network. These software solutions often include tools related to network security, regulatory compliance, employee connectivity and remote mobile device management. 

In some ways, UEM is an extension of enterprise mobility management (EMM), which provides a framework for companies for creating policies, customizing apps and monitoring device usage. EMM is often used to manage bring your own device (BYOD) and choose your own device (CYOD) policies. 

The primary benefit of UEM software is the centralization of endpoint oversight across laptops, tablets, PCs, printers, IoT devices and other connections. Enterprises use UEM to manage every endpoint connected across the company network. 

Microsoft Endpoint Manager features

The platform is highly focused on a centralized dashboard interface that allows enterprises to manage endpoints as well as configurations across the network. Typical UEM features are present, including remote deployment and patch delivery and the ability to remotely wipe devices. 

One standout feature is that users can access several popular Microsoft products through the Endpoint Manager platform, including Intune, Configuration Manager, Desktop Analytics and Windows Autopilot. 

You’ll also find:

  • Customizable reporting tools

  • Multiple environment support capabilities (servers, virtual environments, mobile devices, cloud-based endpoints and more)

  • Linux support in addition to Windows and Mac

  • Malware protection

  • Network vulnerabilities identification

  • Password and access control management

  • IT asset management

 A screenshot of Microsoft Endpoint Manager's endpoint security overview. Photo via Microsoft.

A screenshot of Microsoft Endpoint Manager's endpoint security overview. Photo via Microsoft.  

Integrations 

Microsoft Endpoint Manager can integrate with a long list of applications and software. Apart from Microsoft products, common integrations include:

  • Citrix Endpoint Management

  • Jira 

  • Spiceworks

  • ServiceNow 

  • Zendesk

Benefits

UEM software affords several key benefits to enterprises that have been managing endpoints across multiple solutions. Chief among these is mobile management. Reviewers often note that Microsoft Endpoint Manager excels in this area, offering robust mobile application management (MAM) and mobile device management (MDM) benefits. Specific key benefits include:

  • Built-in scalability features — the software keeps up with expanding networks in real-time

  • Full control over organization-owned devices

  • Customizable policy creation that can be pushed to devices

  • Remote worker benefits like app protection policies and multi-factor authentication

A screenshot of Microsoft Endpoint Manager proactive remediations. Photo via Microsoft.

A screenshot of Microsoft Endpoint Manager's proactive remediations. Photo via Microsoft.

Use cases

The most common use case for UEM is centralizing the management of sometimes hundreds of endpoints across complicated, sprawling networks.

IT teams can easily evaluate and report on endpoints based on several factors, from connection timeouts and security patch update status to policy breaches, all from a single source. 

Enterprises will find many other uses for Microsoft Endpoint Manager, some of which extend well beyond typical UEM capabilities.

For example, managers concerned about productivity across hybrid workforces can use the platform to deploy productivity tools to all connected devices or to specific applications. This allows enterprises to gain a bit more oversight of remote workers than they might have had otherwise. 

User reviews

The Gartner Peer Insights review website gives Microsoft Endpoint Management an aggregated score of 4.3 out of 5.0. Top scoring features include:

  • Product capabilities (4.2)

  • Service and supports (4.2)

  • Evaluation and contracting (4.2)

  • Integration and deployment (4.2)

Here are a few other aggregated scores from prominent online review sites:

Review site

Rating

SoftwareReviews

7.2/10.0

TrustRadius

8.2/10.0

G2

4.5/5.0

Users commonly mention a few pros and cons about Microsoft Endpoint Manager. 

Pros

Cons

Reporting capabilities

Remote connectivity integration issues

Ability to configure Windows update settings

Pricing

Good cloud management

Steep learning curve

Remote wiping capabilities

Frequent updates

Pricing

Microsoft Endpoint Manager is available at two subscription levels:

  • Enterprise Mobility + Security E3 strictly focuses on endpoint management. 

  • Enterprise Mobility + Security E5 adds identity and access management, information protection and identity-driven security

Subscription

Month

Enterprise Mobility + Security E3

$8.80/month

Enterprise Mobility + Security E5

$14.80/month

UEM market

UEM has become a hot market worth an estimated $2.75 billion, according to Grandview Research.

The firm estimates that the UEM market will continue growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) exceeding 30% by 2027.

UEM software makers

There several other top competitors in the UEM software market:

  • ManageEngine Desktop Central

  • Ivanti Unified Endpoint Manager

  • IBM MaaS360 with Watson

  • Citrix Endpoint Management

  • N-Able Remote Monitoring & Management

  • KACE by Quest

  • NinjaRMM

  • ConnectWise Automate

  • Workspace ONE Unified Endpoint Management (UEM) Powered by AirWatch

  • MobileIron (acquired by Avanti)

Conclusions

Microsoft Endpoint Manager is one of the most popular UEM software options out there, partly because for many users, it is an extension of other extremely popular Microsoft products. Reviewers often cite the Microsoft name as a major deciding factor for investing in Endpoint Manager. 

For enterprises that need to get a better handle on endpoint management, especially as it relates to mobile devices and applications, Microsoft Endpoint Manager should be on the shortlist.

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TAGS:

Microsoft, UEM, unified endpoint management, Microsoft Endpoint Manager