Remote Help for Android coming soon to public preview

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This post has been republished via RSS; it originally appeared at: New blog articles in Microsoft Community Hub.

In March, we announced enhancements to Remote Help as part of the Microsoft Intune Suite. Our plans include extending Remote Help to Android and macOS. We’re pleased to announce that Remote Help will come to Android in public preview this month with a focus on enabling remote assistance of Android Enterprise Dedicated devices for frontline workers.

Frontline workers often work in complex and challenging environments where they may encounter technical issues requiring immediate attention. In these situations, access to remote assistance can be critical to ensuring that operations run smoothly. Remote Help allows frontline workers, regardless of location, to receive real-time support from IT administrators. This means that issues can be resolved quickly and efficiently, minimizing downtime and ensuring uninterrupted operations.

On Android, Remote Help currently supports devices from Samsung and Zebra enrolled with Android Enterprise Dedicated. It includes the following key capabilities:

  • Role-based access control (RBAC) and permissions
  • Attended and unattended access to devices
  • Compliance warnings
  • Reporting

RBAC and permissions

Remote Help's RBAC and permissions allow IT administrators to control who can support which devices. This ensures that sensitive information is only accessed by authorized personnel and protects the privacy of those using the device. Administrators set parameters and define the allowed actions for a given helpdesk associate's role. Permissions can be set to limit sessions to view-only or allow full control of a frontline worker’s device, including unattended access.

Unattended access

Support for unattended access allows helpdesk personnel to connect to devices even when nobody is present at the device. For example, a retailer may have scheduled downtimes when stores are closed for business, and no associates are present. Unattended access can be used to perform maintenance tasks or troubleshooting outside of regular business hours, minimizing disruption to business-critical, frontline activities.

Remote access setup

Remote Help is deployed to client devices like any other Android app. Use the Intune admin center to assign the app as Required and it will automatically be installed on devices you want to assist remotely.

On Samsung devices, an additional first-run setup is required to activate the Knox license and grant permissions required for remote access. On Zebra devices, use OEMConfig to grant the app additional remote access permissions; no interaction with the device is necessary.

Once the Remote Help app has been set up on the device, starting help sessions from the Intune admin center is quick and easy with no additional setup by helpdesk staff required. Simply navigate in Intune to the device you wish to assist and start a new assistance session, which displays in-line.

Screenshot of the Remote help session menu in the admin center, and the mode is on Full ControlScreenshot of the Remote help session menu in the admin center, and the mode is on Full Control

Mitigating risk

For attended screen sharing or full access sessions, users see a pop-up window on the device requesting remote access. They can ensure they’re granting access to a trusted helpdesk associate by verifying the associate's name and company.

Unattended sessions begin the same way; a user can decline an unexpected request if an unattended session was started in error. Regardless of whether the session was initiated as attended or unattended, sessions can be terminated by either the user or the helpdesk associate at any time. This allows frontline workers to receive remote assistance while maintaining control over privacy and device security.

Remote Help also includes compliance warnings to mitigate security risks for the organization. If a device is not compliant with the organization's policies, helpdesk associates receive an alert. During the remote help session, a banner in the Intune admin center reminds the helpdesk associate to exercise caution. Since remote help sessions are started from the Intune console’s Device Details view, it’s easy to view policies assigned to the device to determine why it’s out of compliance.

Screenshot of the Intune Remote Help menu with the option to Request screen sharing selectedScreenshot of the Intune Remote Help menu with the option to Request screen sharing selected

Reporting useful insights

Remote Help includes reporting capabilities that enable IT admins to identify recurring issues and potentially suspicious activity. Intune admins can create and analyze reports that identify which users remotely accessed devices; these reports include session start and end times. Data is retained for 30 days and can be used to improve support processes. Reporting provides IT administrators valuable insights into how Remote Help is used and how it can be optimized to support frontline workers.

Remote Help for Android availability

Remote Help for Android launches in public preview later in August. In the meantime, check out the Tech Accelerator session for a video demo of the capabilities described above. Remote Help requires Intune with the Intune Suite or the Remote Help add-on. If you already subscribe to the Intune Suite or Remote Help, no additional licenses are required to use Remote Help with Android.

Learn more about Remote Help and the Intune Suite:

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