Today London-based Amsys announced a new one day course for IT professionals charged with managing and securing iOS devices in their organizations. The course, iPhone / iPad: Security in the Enterprise, was designed by Amsys itself and not by Apple.
Amsys is an Apple Authorized Training Center, meaning that it’s staffed by Apple certified trainers who use Apple’s official training curriculum to teach the company’s range of classes for IT professionals.
With all the training resources that Apple provides to its certified trainers and training centers, you might be wondering why Amsys created this class on its own. The answer is simple – Apple hasn’t provided substantive training options for managing and securing iOS devices. The dearth of official options is leading Amsys and other Apple training facilities scrambling to create their own content to fill the gap.
Business Rules Inc. is a training center based not too far from where I live in upstate NY. It’s one of the most comprehensive Apple training centers and offers classes in its Rhinecliff, NY and Kansas City training centers as well as at other locations in various U.S. states. It has also begun offering its own iOS classes. Currently it offers four classes – two on iOS app development, one on mobile device management using Apple’s Lion Server, and a program specifically geared to iOS in education. None of them have been created or certified by Apple’s training department.
These classes represent a type of cognitive dissonance between Apple’s training department and the needs of its customers. iOS has had comprehence device management built-in for two years. It has had some level of enterprise integration since 2008 when Exchange ActiveSync and Apple’s iPhone Configuration Utility launched alongside the App Store and iPhone 3G.
Even so, Apple hasn’t offered serious training or certification options related to iOS . The closest the company has come is the Mobility facet of its consultants network. Membership requires (PDF link) Apple’s Snow Leopard and Lion certifications or certifications from Microsoft, Cisco, or CompTIA – none of which focus on iOS (some don’t even focus on mobility at all).
It’s great to see dedicated trainers and technology professionals stepping into the fill the iOS training gap (including the speakers at MacTech’s various Boot Camp and In Depth events). As effective as these options are, they’re stopgap measures. They don’t provide a uniform curriculum or an industry standard certification by which IT professionals can be compared. For that, Apple needs to be involved.