How to lock my Android devices in kiosk mode?
A. How to enable my Android devices in kiosk mode?
Android Kiosk Mode is a TinyMDM feature that restricts a device to a single application or a limited set of specific applications. It is often used in business or public environments to restrict access to the device’s functionality. Enable your device in kiosk mode can be useful for a variety of purposes, such as setting up a self-service kiosk in an enterprise or providing a dedicated device for a specific task.
Kiosk mode is ideal for limiting certain devices to a dedicated task: perfect for self-service devices or those used for specific business scenarios. Find out more about the different use cases of Kiosk mode here.
B. How do I enable kiosk mode on mobile devices and tablets?
To restrict your tablets and other mobile devices to a single application or to a limited set of applications, simply click on Enable Kiosk Mode in the Application Management pane of your policy. As you navigate the interface, you will encounter a Kiosk Mode Advanced Settings row. Upon opening this row, you will gain access to various features that are specific to Kiosk Mode, all of which we will explain below:
- Enable Floating Home Button: this will bring up a small floating button to return to the main kiosk screen.
Note: The device may display an ‘Authorization required’ pop-up the first time you activate the feature. This pop-up needs access to the device settings to enable TinyMDM to overlay other applications, which is necessary for the floating home button to appear. All you need to do is click ‘Give authorization,’ then find TinyMDM in the list of suggested applications and grant it overlay permission.
- Shake to exit: this allows the user to enter the admin code to exit the kiosk mode by shaking the device (you can adjust the sensitivity of this setting so that it is not triggered too easily).
- Enable end-of-session data deletion: available only from Android 9 or newer versions, this feature allows you to create temporary kiosk sessions, with data deletion at the end of the session. Learn more
- The wallpaper is customizable in portrait and landscape mode. If you choose an image with a transparent background (.png), the color you choose for the background will be visible behind it. Be careful with the size and weight of the image you import.
C. Two types of TinyMDM kiosk mode
The classic kiosk is a slightly more restricted kiosk mode, where it is possible to:
- Enable or disable the ‘Home’ and ‘Recent Tasks’ buttons on the device
- Leave the notification bar visible to allow the user to access the notifications
- Prevent the device from shutting down so that the user cannot turn it off
- Prevent access to the device settings completely
- Prevent device shutdown
The open kiosk is a slightly less strict kiosk, with access to the Android status bar including notifications but also widgets such as Wifi, Bluetooth, airplane mode, flashlight, automatic rotation, etc. Access to settings is possible in the open kiosk.
D. Applications integrated in the kiosk mode
When you activate the kiosk mode from your policy, eight applications are added to the list of allowed applications in this policy. These are hidden applications by default but you just have to click on them to make them visible on the devices. Among those applications, we find:
- The Info application allows you to retrieve the device information (serial number, device ID, TinyMDM version…) or to make some modifications like a policy reload or a deactivation of the kiosk mode using an admin code for example.
- The Quit application allows you to exit the kiosk mode, using an administrator code.
- The Wifi and Bluetooth applications are shortcuts that lead you directly to the corresponding menu in the device settings.
Info: by clicking in the menu 三 of the Settings, Wifi and Bluetooth applications, you can choose to have them appear as floating widgets on the devices.
Also, the Wi-Fi application and its corresponding widget can be used while the option “Prevent access to the settings” is enabled, but please note that this configuration will require you to give TinyMDM the permission to geolocate the device. On Android systems, access to the Wi-Fi is indeed linked to the geolocation.
E. Other kiosk mode possibilities
Additionnally, in kiosk mode, to authorize only one application, to create file shortcuts on the desktop, to hide applications, to define an application that launches by default, to protect apps with a password…