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IBM Security MaaS360 with Watson: UEM Software 2021

IBM Security MaaS360 with Watson is a unified endpoint management (UEM) software platform that enables enterprises to oversee multiple network endpoints from a centralized interface. 

UEM has become an enterprise priority in the era of complex corporate networking, which includes increases in remote work connections, cloud computing, mobile device usage and the adoption of IoT. Enterprises that have been able to sustain endpoint management across disparate systems face increasing challenges as they scale or expand their networks. UEM is an attractive alternative to ad hoc approaches. 

IBM’s approach to UEM is unique from other major players in the field. In addition to standard UEM features and benefits, IBM Security MaaS360 with Watson offers an AI-enhanced approach.

This review will get you up to speed on what IBM has to offer on the UEM front:

Unified endpoint management (UEM) software

UEM solutions typically include a suite of tools designed to help IT teams manage enterprise network endpoints, including:

  • Mobile devices 

  • Printers

  • Servers

  • Laptops

  • Desktops

  • Wearables

  • IoT devices and sensors 

With UEM, enterprises can centralize their approaches to certain elements of network security, regulatory compliance, employee connectivity and remote mobile device management. 

Before there was UEM, there was enterprise mobility management (EMM). While EMM standalone solutions are still popular, UEM casts a wider net by going beyond the framework EMM provides for companies to create and manage policies and monitor user connections. UEM manages many more endpoints and connects teams to a much broader range of network management tools versus standalone EMM platforms. 

IBM Security MaaS360 with Watson features

The primary feature that sets this platform apart from other UEM vendors is AI endpoint management. The software can autonomously explore enterprise networks to uncover endpoint vulnerabilities, identify areas for improvement, and apply industry best practices to the UEM approach. 

In addition to standard UEM features like a centralized dashboard interface that gives enterprises oversight of endpoints across their networks, you’ll find features like:

  • Support for Apple iOS, macOS, Android and Windows 

  • Support for industry and global security compliance, including FISA, EU-US Privacy Shield and CSA STAR Level 1

  • Includes several popular IBM MaaS tools, including MaaS360 Container App, Microsoft MaaS360 Policy Recommendation Engine, MaaS360 Advisor, and MaaS360 Business Dashboard for Apps

  • Customizable reporting tools

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

  • Password and access control management

  • IT asset management

A screenshot of IBM MaaS360 with Watson's security dashboard. Photo via IBM.

A screenshot of IBM MaaS360 with Watson's security dashboard. Photo via IBM.

Integrations 

IBM Security MaaS360 with Watson can integrate with many popular applications and software products. Apart from IBM MaaS360 products, common integrations include:

  • Citrix Endpoint Management

  • Jira 

  • Spiceworks

  • ServiceNow 

  • Zendesk

Benefits

The overarching benefit for enterprises that bring on UEM solutions is centralization, an area where IBM Security MaaS360 with Watson shines. The platform has an easy-to-understand interface that allows teams to examine endpoints across a long list of factors, including installs, usage, performance, and trends. 

It can also deliver alerts about potential issues. For example, IT teams can use the platform to identify users who attempt to bypass mobile device policies. Other benefits include:

  • App containerization features that guard against data leakage prevention (DLP)

  • Detailed reporting capabilities that allow IT teams to communicate network concerns to outside departments clearly and effectively

  • Remote worker benefits including AI-enhanced policy creation and multi-factor authentication

  • Insights powered by AI into how structured and unstructured data is being used across the network

A screenshot of IBM MaaS360 with Watson's risk rule configurator.

A screenshot of IBM MaaS360 with Watson's risk rule configurator. Photo via IBM.

Use cases

Most enterprises will invest in IBM Security MaaS360 with Watson to enhance the way they manage complex networks.

The software can allow companies to streamline their approach by eliminating the need to use dozens of disconnected platforms to manage different elements of endpoint management. Everything related to endpoint connections, mobile device and application usage and many other key networking issues can be managed from a single interface. 

IBM Security MaaS360 with Watson is especially proficient when it comes to working with applications across all the major operating systems. It’s easy to push device management updates to devices that fall under multiple operating systems. This can enhance BYOD and CYOD programs, where enterprises have less control over which devices employees use to log in. 

User reviews

The Gartner Peer Insights review website gives Microsoft Endpoint Management an aggregated score of 4.4 out of 5.0. Top scoring features include:

  • Product capabilities (4.4)

  • Evaluation and contracting (4.3)

  • Integration and deployment (4.3)

  • Service and supports (4.2)

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

Review site

Rating

TrustRadius 

8.2/10.0

SoftwareReviews

6.9/10.0

Capterra

4.1/5.0

G2

3.8/5.0

Users commonly mention a few pros and cons about IBM Security MaaS360 with Watson. 

Pros

Cons

User-friendly UI

Automation features need refining

Built-in threat management 

Not as full-featured as other offerings

MDM capabilities

UI easy to use but outdated

Easy to integrate with Microsoft Azure

Slow support response

Pricing

After a 30-day free trial, IBM Security MaaS360 with Watson is available at four subscription levels:

  • Essentials: Management over mobile device users and devices including smartphones, tablets, laptops and apps, enhanced by Watson cognitive AI insights

  • Deluxe: Adds email and chat containerization, which separates personal device data from enterprise data

  • Premier: Adds content management, application security, protected network access and secure browser

  • Enterprise: Tailored toward enterprises with more security features and productivity tools 

Subscription

Monthly Cost (starting price)

Essentials

$4.00/device

Deluxe

$5.00/device

Premier

$6.25/device

Enterprise

$9.00/device

UEM market

The UEM market has grown to a $2.75 billion industry, according to Grandview Research.

The research firm predicts that the trend will continue, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of more than 30% by 2027. 

UEM software makers

Noteworthy competitors include:

  • 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

IBM Security MaaS360 with Watson is a standout option in the UEM market due to its AI-enhanced approach.

It also “plays well with others,” so enterprises can feel confident it will work across networks that include endpoints from a wide variety of operating systems and brands. 

The platform is a solid choice for enterprise endpoint management, especially for companies already investing in other IBM MaaS360 products.

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TAGS:

IBM, UEM, unified endpoint management