SOTI MobiControl Review

Remote control and screen-sharing allow us to resolve some issues faster

What is our primary use case?

We use it for the management of our store mobile devices. We have 12,000-plus devices managed by SOTI. We actively deploy applications on a weekly basis, sometimes multiple times a week.

How has it helped my organization?

We use the remote control technology and screen-sharing features for our enterprise Android devices. Those features definitely do allow us to resolve some issues faster because we can work with the store associate to have them do whatever they're doing on the floor, and we are able to actively look at the data and figure out what's going on.

While the solution hasn't helped with device downtime per se, but it has helped us resolve application issues.

What is most valuable?

One of the most valuable features is the remote control. If there are issues in the field, we can remote into those devices and see what kind of issues they are.

Obviously, the other one would be just how easy it is to deploy applications, and we pretty can much guarantee the applications are going to be set up as needed on our enterprise devices.

What needs improvement?

The management console could be improved to be a little bit more user-friendly. Some of the stuff is a little bit cumbersome, some of it feels like an engineering solution, but otherwise it's pretty good.

For how long have I used the solution?

Three to five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Most of the time it's stable. We were on the phone with SOTI pretty much every day when we were doing an upgrade. For a week or so it was pretty rough going. Since then, it's been mostly stable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

When we looked to scale out the solution to manage more devices, it became a little bit cumbersome, as far as managing when devices checked in, managing multiple deployment servers, etc.

Once you figure out how to scale it, it seems to work pretty well.

How is customer service and technical support?

Sometimes tech support is hit or miss. Sometimes it's more an issue of trying to find the right person who can help you resolve the issue. Typically, you're dealing with an initial-help consultant, but most of the time it requires, at least in our instances, people who have more knowledge of the product, to be able to assist us.

Which solutions did we use previously?

We didn't fully switch. SOTI offset some of the functionality because our legacy platform couldn't support Android devices. That's why we introduced SOTI into the mix. One of the reasons that we chose SOTI, as far as Android goes, is that it was the most advanced platform at the time. We were used to the legacy Windows mobile devices, being able to remote control and see everything on the devices. SOTI allowed us to continue everything that we were used to.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup was pretty straightforward. Our deployment strategy is to do pilots, expanded pilots, and full roll-outs. The amount of time it takes depends on what we're doing and how big the application is.

What about the implementation team?

Everything was done internally and we worked with SOTI directly to resolve any issues.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

The only two we were looking at were SOTI and AirWatch.

What other advice do I have?

Make sure to see if all the features meet your criteria. That is really the only thing that varies between MDMs, the features.

We don't use the Lockdown Kiosk Mode feature of the solution. I actually created our own version of the lockdown kiosk feature because we needed more control than what SOTI can provide.

We don't use the real-time location services since we are corporate and everything is local. We don't need to see where devices are geolocated. As for the admin console, it could be better but it's not bad; we're running a slightly older version of SOTI.

The device users are store-associates. The staff for deployment and maintenance of the solution are just two individuals, myself and another engineer. We handle the whole system.

I would rate SOTI at eight out ten. Honestly, there's no product out there that I would ever give a ten, because every product has nuances and issues. My rating of SOTI is more along the lines of the need for them to keep enhancing it and making it a better product, making it easier to use. Most organizations are looking for a more-or-less automated solution that can run and maintain itself, rather than needing a lot of man-hours.

Disclosure: IT Central Station contacted the reviewer to collect the review and to validate authenticity. The reviewer was referred by the vendor, but the review is not subject to editing or approval by the vendor.
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