Enterprises know they’ll have happier employees if they embrace BYOD rather than prohibit it. Welcoming BYOD can be better for business output, too—the trick is to find the tools that keep employees productive when they’re using their own smartphones, tablets or laptops to access the corporate network remotely.
In his recent reviews of NCP’s managed IPsec VPN clients compatible with Android (version 4.0 and higher), eWeek journalist Jeff Cogswell set out to determine just how well NCP’s VPN supports BYOD. The result? Not just a pass, but one with flying colors.
Cogswell was particularly sold on a few of NCP’s product features that make it suited for welcoming Android-based mobile devices into the enterprise. For one, the installation was a quick and painless process. Right away, Cogswell connected to NCP’s test server and his own VPN server, which is OpenBSD. He also tested it with a Cisco server, and it worked in all cases—the fact that NCP’s Secure Enterprise Android Client is compatible with all common VPN gateways is a huge plus, since IT departments are increasingly compelled to support various platforms. The eWeek reviewer was also relieved that his smartphone didn’t have to be rooted; in fact, he said it’s a significant differentiator between NCP’s offering and other Android apps: “I have spent a lot of time using Android devices in recent years, and what struck me as particularly interesting is that your phone doesn’t need to be rooted. Rather, Android supports the networking tasks that this VPN client requires. That’s a huge plus.”
Cogswell highlighted many other benefits, including how the client allows you to choose the Internet Key Exchange (IKE) type or a fully qualified domain name, and how it supports both split and IPSec compression. He noted that the client’s ability to configure the VPN to start automatically will be particularly useful for corporate-issued devices and in BYOD environments, as it might compel IT to enforce the “always-on” VPN policy for personal devices. The ability for IT managers to easily access NCP’s VPN logs was also singled out as a handy attribute, in case they need to determine if there are any problems.
Cogswell also explored the slight nuances between NCP’s basic and premium Android clients and concluded that both versions provide the necessary encryption and authentication functionality enterprises need to support a BYOD environment.
So, why use NCP’s VPN clients for Android? Take it from Cogswell, who says it best: “A good VPN client should be transparent, and indeed this one is … the client is easy to install and configure. Once it’s up and running, it sits in the background and doesn’t interfere with your work. It definitely does what you would expect a good VPN client to do.”
Want to trial the products yourself? We encourage you to download the basic and premium versions of the NCP Secure Android Client from the Google Play Store and try the free 30-day trial of the managed VPN client.
We also invite you to view the eWeek slideshow here.