VMware AirWatch Review

​If you want decent support mechanisms, expect to pay and pay well


What is most valuable?

  • Easy to navigate interface for admins
  • Integration with Cisco ISE and other third party applications utilizing REST and SOAP APIs.
  • AD/SMTP/Certificate Integration (SCEP/DCOM)
  • Feature-rich, including integration with other VMware products (Content Management/Mail/VPN/SandPit).
  • Zero day support for new Mobile OS firmware – fast to market on new API’s available.

How has it helped my organization?

By allowing us to centrally manage cross-platform mobile devices for corporate and BYOD.

What needs improvement?

  • QA – better code execution
  • Apple Mac management is troublesome
  • Documentation prerequisites often leave out important information.
  • Support in general; We have many issues that have never been fixed.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've used this solution for six years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

  • On-premise comes with challenges with upgrades and new features (SEG/Powershell)
  • Many bugs with every version release of both the console and AirWatch Apps/products. Often bringing back old documented issues in new releases.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

Yes. Way too many servers needed for additional functionality which becomes very complex.

How is customer service and technical support?

If you want decent support mechanisms, expect to pay and pay well. Otherwise, the process is time consuming often covering the same processors multiples times. The first point of contact takes notes of the issue with no product knowledge.

The next escalation is slow and often just asks for logs and is not helpful. If you are implementing a new service or upgrading expect to be charged for professional services even if you believe this is a support issue.

Which solutions did we use previously?

I have used many solutions over the past five years. They all have pros and cons and, unfortunately, no silver bullet.

How was the initial setup?

Setup is complex in a large or on-premise environment. Recommend SaaS model for most scenarios, but still complex once you start plugging in the additional features.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

VMware is expensive and continues to raise licensing costs year on year. Business model is to separate services so you need more servers which if you are a VMWare customer cost you more in licensing costs.

Also, I've noticed that the minimum hardware specs for your servers continue to be raised.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I have evaluated the other main players. MobileIron is built by engineers, not sales teams. Infrastructure is relatively simple and does what it says on the tin well.

AirWatch has many more features but is not always implemented well. The rest are all trying to catch up or are specialized for particular use cases.

What other advice do I have?

Scope out your functional requirements, HA and DR. You will need to plan for upgrades continually to any on-premise infrastructure. Lots of bad code so never go latest releases. If you want support, expect to pay. Managed services can be a good option. Test, test and test.

Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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