Next Up for MSPs: Apple Mac Remote Control

I'm not sure how it happened, but I feel as if most MSPs were late to supporting Apple Mac customers. But a growing list of Mac-centric management tools are emerging for MSPs.

The latest case in point: SolarWinds N-able is beta testing Remote Control with MSP Connect for Mac. Basically, it's a remote control technology that SolarWinds acquired when it purchased BeAnywhere.

SolarWinds N-able, like many MSP software providers, has been expanding its Mac support over the past year or two. The company's recent N-central 10.1 release -- for remote monitoring and management (RMM) -- featured extensive Mac management enhancements. Remote Control, coming in the 10.2 release (currently in beta) will take the Mac effort to the next level.

Of course, SolarWinds isn't alone in the MSP-centric Mac management conversation. LogicNow recently acquired Mac-MSP, a home-grown Mac management platform. The vast majority of RMM (remote monitoring and management) platforms have some sort of Mac management capabilities at this point, though upstarts like Addigy continue to introduce new Mac-centric management tools.

The same is true in the MSP remote control market, where ConnectWise ScreenConnect stretches beyond Windows to support Mac OS, Linux and more.

Still, I realize features and functional depth will vary from vendor to vendor.

Supporting Macs is a natural next-step for MSPs. Among the reasons:

  • Mac customers are willing to pay a premium for quality hardware, software and services.
  • Apple now has about 7 percent to 8 percent of the PC market.
  • Up in the enterprise, Apple continues to work closely with Cisco Systems and IBM on Mac OS and iOS support capabilities.
  • But for small business support, Apple often defers to its own retail stores -- which are often overwhelmed with block-time reservations.

In theory, that leaves the door wide open for MSPs to introduce and/or bolster their Mac support services.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.