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Apple Buys Firm That Automates Device Setup for Business

Apple acquired Fleetsmith, which “automates device setup, intelligence, patching, and security” for a company’s iPhones, iPads and Apple TVs.

Terms weren’t disclosed.

The startup’s technology works with Apple’s tech to enable IT departments to bring a device online as soon as an employee powers it up, TechCrunch reported.

Before the acquisition of San Francisco-based Fleetsmith, Apple relied on third-party companies to deploy corporate-device-management services.

Reports note that the Fleetsmith remote technology is particularly useful when so many employees are working from home during the pandemic.

Fourteen months ago Fleetsmith raised $30 million of venture capital in a Series B round led by Menlo Ventures with participation from Tiger Global Management, Upfront Ventures and Harrison Metal. That round brought the company’s funding to more than $40 million.

Apple has been on an acquisition spree in 2020, acquiring Voysis to improve its Siri AI, Next VR for virtual-reality broadcasting technology, Xnor.ai for AI tools and Dark Sky to improve its weather app.

On Monday, Apple kicked off its annual Worldwide Developers Conference with a keynote from CEO Tim Cook and the introduction of iOS 14.

The latest operating system for Apple’s iPhone includes newly customizable home screen layouts; greater control of the size, frequency and location of widgets; and enhancements to messages.

Organizing the iPhone’s screens was one of the biggest updates on the new operating system with a new easy-to-access App Library helping to organize various apps; SmartStack, which allows users to navigate through various widgets; and picture-in-picture options that allow users to keep their videos playing on a smaller screen as they navigate other apps and pages on their iPhone.

At last check in a sharply lower broad market, Apple shares were trading off 1.8% at $360.13.