Set Microsoft Launcher as the default launcher for fully managed Android Enterprise devices

With the latest Microsoft Endpoint Manager (Intune) service release (2006), we are now able to set the Microsoft Launcher as the default launcher for fully managed Android Enterprise devices.

A reason for setting the Microsoft Launcher as default is to make your different Android devices in the company have the same look and feel. As every Android vendor changes the stock Android experience, it might be hard to provide support on all those devices with all those different launchers. Using the same launcher on every device, makes it much easier to support this.

To set the Microsoft Launcher as the default launcher, we need to deploy the Microsoft Launcher app and use a Device restrictions profile to set the launcher as default.
Optional we can use an App Configuration policy to deploy additional settings for the Launcher and grant permissions to the app.

So let`s get started with this setup.

Deploy the Microsoft Launcher app

We start by deploying the Microsoft Launcher app as required to our Android Enterprise Fully Managed devices.

  • Select Managed Google Play app as App type
  • Click Select
  • Search for Microsoft Launcher
  • Select Microsoft Launcher
  • Click Approve (twice)
  • Click Done
  • Click Sync in the top left corner
  • After a few minutes the app is shown in the overview
  • Assign the app as required to the security group of choice

Create Device restrictions profile

To set the Microsoft Launcher as default launcher we use a Device restrictions configurations profile.

  • Browse to Devices – Android
  • On the Configuration profiles tab click +Create profile
  • Select Android Enterprise as Platform
  • Select Device restrictions (under Device Owner only) as Profile
  • Click Create
  • Give the profile a Name
  • Enter a Description (Optional)
  • Click Next
  • Open Device experience
  • Select Fully managed as Enrollment profile type
  • Set Make Microsoft Launcher the default launcher to Enabled
  • Make your choice in all other settings
  • Click Next

Finish the wizard by assigning the profile to a security group of choice.

Create App configuration policy

The option to create and deploy an App configuration policy is optional, but granting the required permissions to the app with the profile provides a better experience for the user, otherwise the user needs to grant these permissions manually.
Besides the permissions, additional settings can be deployed like a default background.

  • Browse to Apps – App configuration policies
  • Click +Add
  • Select Managed devices
  • Give the policy a Name
  • Enter a Description (Optional)
  • Select Android Enterprise as Platform
  • Select Device Owner Only as Profile type
  • Click Select app
  • Search for launcher
  • Select Microsoft Launcher
  • Click OK
  • Click Next
  • Click +Add
  • Select all permissions which are needed by the app
  • Click OK
  • Select Auto grant from the drop-down list for every permissions
  • Select Use configuration designer as Configuration settings format
  • Select all the additional settings of your choice, like Set Device Wallpaper
  • Click OK
  • Set the Configuration value for every settings
  • Click Next

Finish the wizard by assigning the policy to a security group.

End-user experience

Now that all settings and the Microsoft Launcher app are deployed, let`s have a look at the end-user experience.

The Microsoft Launcher is set as default launcher. As I replaced the default wallpaper by using the App configuration policy, that wallpaper is shown on my screen shot.

When I swipe to the left, the Microsoft Launcher feed is shown. As I have applied the calendar permissions already with the App Config policy, no need for the user to grant that permission. Only sign-in to show the calendar items.

When we have a look at the App permissions, we see all required permissions are indeed applied.

That`s it for this post. Thank you for reading! Reach out to me if you have any feedback or questions.




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