[Q] Android Fleet Deployment/Provisioning/Management options?
I did have a search on here, but didn't find anything particularly relevant so I'm hoping some people could help me out.
My situation is that I manage the deployment of Android Handsets and Tablets within my company. This process is fairly ad-hoc as in, I order a few handsets at a time, set them up with company software requirements + some desktop shortcuts, and ship them to the specific user.
My problem is that the quantity of devices I'm going to be deploying in the next 12 months will grow significantly, and this job is extremely boring, and costing me in time wasted on a repetitive task that could be much better spent on other things.
So I am looking for tools to help make this process more automated/quicker/simpler.
The crux of my requirements are:
a) install software packages (some from market, some not eg Lotus Notes Traveler)
b) Slight desktop customisations (add some app shortcuts, browser homepage etc) - realistically this is optional, but I thought I'd mention it.
Currently I take care of (a) with a homegrown python script which makes some adb calls.
(b) and (c) are entirely manual, and currently depend in part on the device going out - could be any of HTC Desire/Desire S/Sensation, Motorola Atrix/Defy+/Xoom or Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1.
I also have to do this *after* having logged in, set up at least one google account + possibly a motoblur account, and enabled USB debugging - is it possible to get adb shell functionality without needing to get into the OS and enable USB Debugging?
Moving to higher level things, I'm open to the idea of paying for dedicated tools to manage this job - eg Google Apps Domain services, or some other Mobile Data Management service (eg silverback mdm).
However, what these tools are geared to is securing a fleet of devices, but don't seem to offer what I'm looking for, which I believe are pretty simple requirements. ie add some arbitrary apps, and make them accessible on the front screen of the device.
I can't imagine that I'm the first person to need to do this, so what are other people doing to ease the management burden?