ManageEngine President Raj SabhlokHolding true to the promise ManageEngine President Raj Sabhlok (pictured) made in early February 2011, the IT management software provider and division of Zoho Corp. has expanded its Desktop Central management solution to include mobile device management (MDM) software functions for the iOS platform that includes Apple iPhone and iPad. ManageEngine made the announcement at the Mobile World Congress 2012 conference.

Until now, ManageEngine's Desktop Central security, asset and configuration management solutions were only compatible with desktops and laptops. But now ManageEngine has broadened Desktop Central's reach by extending all of the solution's capabilities to mobile Apple iOS devices, including the Apple iPhone, Apple iTouch and Apple iPad. The news comes after ManageEngine extended its IT360 solution to the iPad in order to allow managed services providers and IT administrators to manage their IT infrastructures from their tablets.

It's no surprise that ManageEngine is starting with MDM support for iOS devices. Sabhlok has told me several times that iOS mobile devices are the most prevalent devices entering the corporate networks of ManageEngine's business customers.

"With iPads and iPhones flooding their networks, IT organizations must find a viable way to manage those devices," Sabhlok said. But ManageEngine is trying to give IT departments a way to manage those devices without adding more of a workload.

So by adding MDM capabilties to the Desktop Central solution that its customers are already using, the IT software provider is allows MSPs and enterprise end-users to manage the mobile devices on their networks through the same console that they already use to manage their desktops and laptops. Sabhlok didn't say for sure, but my guess would be support for Google Android is next, purely based on Android being the second-most popular mobile device OS on ManageEngine's business customer networks.

But for ManageEngine customers trying to manage iOS devices, the solution is already here. They can use the company's MDM software to remotely lock, reset and/or wipe iOS mobile devices. They can also use the solution to remotely perform configuration management jobs like configure email and restrict secure information; as well as capture device information like model, serial number, and device capacity. Finally, ManageEngine customers managing iOS devices can create asset management reports to obtain and organize details on the entire mobile device population on theirĀ business networks.

We'll look for broader MDM support from ManageEngine in the coming as months, as well as a response from competitors such asĀ BMC Software, which recently acquired Numara Software.