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FileWave MDM can also deploy books purchased from the iBooks Store to iOS devices in the same manner it can deploy mobile apps.  The workflow for deploying an iBooks Store book is identical to that for deploying a VPP mobile app; the only difference its that the license type for the association must be a user-based license. Once deployed, they become the permanent property of the end-user and cannot be revoked or reassigned in accordance with Apple’s licensing terms and conditions. Note that free books can only be distributed with managed distribution licenses.

To deploy iBooks Store books silently to managed supervised iOS devices, the end-user must link their Apple ID with FileWave. When you assign or associate an iBooks Store book through a fileset to a user’s Apple ID, that book is added to the content locker associated with that Apple ID. The most complex portion of the VPP managed distribution system is the interaction between the end-user and the VPP license architecture to associate an Apple ID with a device. The workflow for deploying iBook Store books is as follows.

  • Generate VPP Client User ID and associate it with client device
  • Send VPP invitation to user via MDM or email (if an email is available for enrollment user of the device)
  • User accepts VPP invitation, agrees to Apple’s terms and conditions, and enters their Apple ID when accepting the invitation. This links user's Apple ID to client device.
  • Assigns iBooks Store book to client device(s)
  • Book appears in iBooks mobile app on client device if it is supervised (users on unsupervised devices will be prompted to accept the book)

Apple’s VPP manages iBooks licenses that are assigned to a specific user’s Apple ID. Every device that you want to deploy books to must have a VPP Client User ID  associated with it and the user must accept the VPP invitation on the client device by entering their Apple ID. Apple's terms and conditions requires that you have a unique Apple ID associated with each iOS device.

Purchasing books in the iTunes VPP App Store 

Log into your Apple VPP account at or to purchase your iBooks Store books. Even if the books are free you still need to purchase VPP licenses for them at a cost of $0. Do not over-purchase licenses. Only buy as many as you think you'll need. You can always buy more later if needed. For example, if there are 1000 students in your school do not purchase 200,000 licenses. More licenses will increase syncing time with Apple's VPP license servers. It may take anywhere from a few seconds to 30 minutes (usually a few minutes) for Apple to generate licenses for your book purchase, depending on the number of licenses. You will receive an email confirmation from Apple once the licenses are available for use. Often it is faster to simply refresh your purchase history in the VPP portal. The app purchase will display "Managed Licenses" for the status if the licenses have been successfully issued. If you have an Apple School Manager account then the screenshots may differ than those in the instructions below.

Deploying Books to Client Devices with VPP Managed Licenses

The VPP User Management window contains a list of enrolled devices in the upper-left pane and a list of VPP Client User IDs in the upper-right VPP Users pane. The bottom Associations pane of the window lists devices and VPP Client User IDs assigned to them.

To deploy iBooks Store books to client devices

  1. Go to Assistants > VPP User Management, select your device(s) in the upper-left Clients pane and click Assign user(s). This will generate VPP Client User ID(s) in the upper-right VPP Users pane for each device. Association(s) between the device(s) and VPP Client User ID(s) will appear in the Associations pane at the bottom. Note that the Association Status column in the Clients pane will change to “Registered”.
  2. Send a VPP invitation to the device user directly through the device via iOS or via email.
    • Direct invitation - Highlight the VPP Client User ID(s) associated with your devices in the upper-right VPP Users pane and click Send invite notification to device(s).
    • Email invitation - Click the Email address field in the VPP Users pane, enter an address for the VPP Client User ID, and then click Send invite url via email. Note that the email entered can be any email address owned by the user of the device and doesn’t necessarily have to be the email address associated with the user’s Apple ID.
  3. Accept the invitation on the iOS device.
    • Click the link in the email or tap Continue when asked if you'd like to "Allow App and Book Assignment".
    • Enter an Apple ID to associate iBooks licenses assigned to you.
    • Accept the Apple Media Terms and Conditions and Agree to allow FileWave MDM to assign books to you.

    • A confirmation message lets you know that FileWave MDM can now assign book licenses to this device.
    • If you go to Settings > iTunes & App Store on the device you'll notice that it's logged into the iTunes App Store with the Apple ID you specified when accepting the VPP invitation.
  4. Assign iBooks Store books directly to your device or a group your device is a member of and update model. The book should appear shortly in the My Books > All Books section of the iBooks mobile app. If the device is not supervised, the end-user will be prompted to accept the book.
    • In the Associations section drag the book(s) from the Fileset pane on the upper-right onto the iOS device or device group in the the Clients pane on the upper-left.
    • Double-click the new association in the Associations pane at the bottom to configure timing settings or enable Kiosk mode for the book. If there are multiple associations you will have to edit the settings for each one if you want to alter them.

If you will be using interactive web-based enrollment, you can automate VPP Client User ID generation and sending VPP invitation (skipping steps 1-2) by going into the VPP & DEP preferences tab, clicking Configure tokens, and checking Create VPP users for newly enrolled devices.  This feature is not available for devices enrolled via DEP.

When the App Portal is launched on a client device for the first time after the device is enrolled in FileWave MDM the end-user will be prompted to accept the VPP invitation.

Note that an Apple ID and thus VPP Client User ID can be associated with multiple devices; for example a user may have multiple iOS devices that use the same Apple ID and are thus associated with the same VPP Client User IDs. When a user accepts a VPP invitation you will never see the user’s Apple ID (unless they give you the email account they use for their Apple ID as their contact email). What you will see, as proof that they have accepted the invitation, is an iTunes ID hash in the VPP User Management window, along with a Status of "Associated".

If some users have not accepted their VPP invitation yet you can filter for entries with a status of "Registered", select all of them and use either of the Send invite buttons to re-invite them again.

Monitoring iBooks VPP License Usage

Go to the License Management section and you'll notice that the Installed column will report a count for your iBooks books that licenses have been issued for. Remember that once a user-based VPP license has used it is essentially burned and now belongs to the Apple ID associated with the device it was deployed to.

Applications that are within the the low license count threshold will appear with a yellow dot and "Warning License Watermark" for the Compliance Status column. Applications with more available licenses than the low license threshold will appear with a green dot. To set a low license threshold for your iBooks book, select it, click the Edit License button in the toolbar, enter a value in the Warning when X (or less) remain field, and click Save.

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