App Store Apps

Jamf Pro allows you to distribute App Store apps and VPP store apps (including custom B2B apps) to users and mobile devices. After an app has been distributed, you can also use Jamf Pro to update the app or remove the app from mobile devices.

When you distribute an App Store app or VPP store app, you add it to Jamf Pro and configure settings for the app, such as the distribution method and whether to make the app managed. (For more information, see Understanding App Distribution Methods and Understanding Managed Apps.) Then, you specify the users and mobile devices that should receive it (called “scope”).

Note: To specify managed App Store apps and VPP store apps to distribute to or remove from personally owned iOS devices, you must use the Apps (iOS only) payload of the personal device profile that is used to perform management tasks on the devices. For more information, see Personal Device Profiles.

App Store apps and VPP store apps purchased through Apple's Volume Purchase Program (VPP) can be distributed to mobile devices or users with VPP-managed distribution. For more information, see VPP-Managed Distribution for Mobile Devices and User-Based VPP Assignments.

As an alternative to VPP-managed distribution, Jamf Pro also supports distributing App Store apps and VPP store apps using redeemable VPP codes. For more information, see VPP Code Distribution for Mobile Devices.

Managed App Configuration

You can configure preferences and settings in Jamf Pro for a managed app before distributing it to mobile devices.

There are also several variables that you can use to populate settings in a managed app with attribute values stored in Jamf Pro. This allows you to create preferences containing information about each user and mobile device to which you are distributing the app.

When the app is installed on a mobile device, the variable is replaced with the value of the corresponding attribute in Jamf Pro.

Variable

Mobile Device Information

$DEVICENAME

Mobile Device Name

$SERIALNUMBER

Serial Number

$UDID

UDID

$USERNAME

Username

$FULLNAME or $REALNAME

Full Name

$EMAIL

Email Address

$PHONE

Phone Number

$ROOM

Room

$POSITION

Position

$MACADDRESS

MAC Address

$JSSID

Jamf Pro ID

$APPJSSID

Jamf Pro ID of the App

$SITEID

Site ID

$SITENAME

Site Name

$BUILDINGNAME

Building Name

$BUILDINGID

Building ID

$DEPARTMENTID

Department ID

$DEPARTMENTNAME

Department Name

Note: An $EXTENSIONATTRIBUTE_<#> variable is generated each time you create an extension attribute with the "LDAP Attribute Mapping" input type. For more information, see Mobile Device Extension Attribute Input Types.

Requirements

To install an App Store app, VPP store app, or update, users may be prompted to enter an Apple ID.

To distribute apps directly to mobile devices via VPP-managed distribution, you need mobile devices with iOS 9 or later.

To associate VPP codes with an App Store app or VPP store app, you need an Excel spreadsheet (.xls) that contains VPP codes for the app.

Managed App Configuration only applies to mobile devices with iOS 7 or later.

Per-App VPN connections are only applied to mobile devices with iOS 7 or later.

Distributing an App Store App or VPP Store App

  1. Log in to Jamf Pro.

  2. Click Devices at the top of the page.

  3. Click Mobile Device Apps.

  4. Click New images/download/thumbnails/16440898/Icon_New_Button.png .

  5. Select App Store app or VPP store app and click Next.

  6. Do one of the following:

    • To add the app by browsing the App Store or VPP store, enter the name of the app, choose an App Store country, and click Next. Then click Add for the app you want to add.

    • To add the app by uploading a VPP code spreadsheet, click Choose File and upload the Excel spreadsheet (.xls) that contains VPP codes for the app.

    • To add the app by manually entering information about it, click Enter Manually.

  7. Use the General pane to configure settings for the app, including the distribution method and whether to make the app managed. You can also enable automatic app updates for the app. (For information, see Enabling Automatic App Updates.)
    Note: Beginning with iOS 10.3, you can require a mobile device to have a tethered network connection to download the app. A tethered network connection requires a computer with macOS 10.12.4 or later, and must be connected to the Internet via Ethernet and have Wi-Fi turned off. Portable computers must be plugged in to a power source because the tethered caching service prevents computers from going to sleep. Select the Require tethered network connection for app installation checkbox. This checkbox is only displayed if "Install Automatically/Prompt Users to Install" is chosen in the Distribution Method pop-up menu. App updates will not require tethering; this setting is for initial installations of an app only.

  8. Click the Scope tab and configure the scope of the app.
    For more information, see Scope.

  9. (Optional) Click the Self Service tab and configure the way the app is displayed in Self Service. You can customize the text displayed in the description for the app in Self Service by using Markdown in the Description field.
    For information about Markdown, see the following Knowledge Base article:
    Using Markdown to Format Text
    Note: The Self Service tab is only displayed if "Make Available in Self Service" is chosen in the Distribution Method pop-up menu.

  10. (Optional) If you want to distribute the app directly to mobile devices via VPP-managed distribution, do the following:

    1. Click the VPP tab, and then click the Device Assignments tab.

    2. Select the Assign VPP Content checkbox.

    3. Choose the VPP account that has purchased the app to distribute to mobile devices.

  11. (Optional) If you want to associate VPP codes with the app and have not already uploaded a VPP code spreadsheet, do the following:

    1. Click the VPP tab, and then click the VPP Codes tab.

    2. Upload the Excel spreadsheet (.xls) that contains VPP codes for the app.

  12. (Optional) Click the App Configuration tab and configure the preferences as needed.
    Note: The App Configuration tab is only displayed if the Make App Managed when possible checkbox is selected.

  13. Click Save.

The app is distributed the next time mobile devices in the scope contact Jamf Pro. If users were added as targets to the scope, the app is distributed to the devices those users are assigned to the next time the devices contact Jamf Pro.

Updating an App Store App or VPP Store App

Jamf Pro allows you to update an individual App Store app or VPP store app in the following ways:

  • Enable automatic app updates–This automatically updates the app description, icon, and version in Jamf Pro and on mobile devices. This update happens once a day depending on the time of day you specify.

  • Force an app to update–You can force an app to update immediately on mobile devices if there are updates available in Jamf Pro. This update only applies to managed apps. (For more information, see Understanding Managed Apps.)

  • Distribute an app update–You can distribute an update for an App Store app by manually updating the version number and URL for the app in Jamf Pro. The update is distributed to mobile devices the next time they contact Jamf Pro.

Note: Jamf Pro also allows you to enable automatic updates for all App Store apps and VPP store apps, or force all App Store apps and VPP store apps to update immediately. For more information, see App Store App Update Settings.

Enabling Automatic App Updates

  1. Log in to Jamf Pro.

  2. Click Devices at the top of the page.

  3. Click Mobile Device Apps.

  4. Click the app for which you want to enable automatic app updates.

  5. Click Edit.

  6. Select Automatically update app.

  7. To select a country or region to use for syncing apps with iTunes, choose an option from the iTunes Country or Region pop-up menu.

  8. To specify a time of day to sync apps with iTunes, set the time using the iTunes Sync Time pop-up menus.

  9. Click Save.

The app is updated in Jamf Pro and on mobile devices in the scope based on the time you configure the app to sync with iTunes.

Forcing an App Update

  1. Log in to Jamf Pro.

  2. Click Devices at the top of the page.

  3. Click Mobile Device Apps.

  4. Click the app you want to update.

  5. Click Edit.

  6. Click Force Update.

  7. Click Save.

The app is updated immediately on mobile devices in the scope if there is an update available in Jamf Pro.

Distributing an App Store App or VPP Store App Update

  1. Log in to Jamf Pro.

  2. Click Devices at the top of the page.

  3. Click Mobile Device Apps.

  4. Click the app you want to update.

  5. Click Edit.

  6. Enter the new version number and URL.
    Important: Do not change the bundle identifier. Jamf Pro uses the existing bundle identifier to distribute the update.

  7. Click Save.

The update is distributed the next time mobile devices in the scope contact Jamf Pro.

Removing an App Store App or VPP Store App from Mobile Devices

To remove an App Store app or VPP store app from one or more devices, you remove the user(s) or mobile device(s) from the scope.

  1. Log in to Jamf Pro.

  2. Click Devices at the top of the page.

  3. Click Mobile Device Apps.

  4. Click the app you want to remove.

  5. Click the Scope tab and remove users or mobile devices from the scope as needed.
    For more information, see Scope.

  6. Click Save.

The app is removed the next time the mobile devices contact Jamf Pro.

Related Information

For related information, see the following sections in this guide:

For related information, see the following Knowledge Base article:

Managing an App that is Currently Installed as an Unmanaged App
Learn how to convert an app from an unmanaged state to a managed state after the app has been installed on a mobile device.

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