Configure the Microsoft Managed Home Screen app for Android Enterprise

The Managed Home Screen is the application used for corporate-owned Android Enterprise dedicated devices enrolled via Intune and running in multi-app kiosk mode. For these devices, the Managed Home Screen acts as the launcher for other approved apps to run on top of it. The Managed Home Screen provides IT admins the ability to customize their devices and to restrict the capabilities that the end user can access.

When to configure the Microsoft Managed Home Screen app

Typically, if settings are available to you through Device configuration, configure the settings there. Doing so will save you time, minimize errors, and will give you a better Intune-support experience. However, some of the Managed Home Screen settings are currently only available via the App configuration policies blade in the Intune console. Use this document to learn how to configure the different settings either using the configuration designer or a JSON script.

Note

It is currently possible, and advisable, to set allow-listed applications and pinned web links through Client apps and Device configuration. For the full list of settings available in Device configuration that impact Managed Home Screen, see Dedicated device settings.

First, navigate to the Intune console in Azure portal and go to Client apps > App configuration policies. Add a configuration policy for Managed devices running Android and choose Managed Home Screen as the associated app. Click on Configuration settings to configure the different available Managed Home Screen settings.

Choosing a Configuration Settings Format

There are two methods that you can use to define configuration settings for Managed Home Screen:

  • Configuration designer allows you to configure settings with an easy-to-use UI that lets you toggle features on or off and set values. In this method, there are a few disabled configuration keys with value type BundleArray. These configuration keys can only be configured by entering JSON data.
  • JSON data allows you to define all possible configuration keys using a JSON script.

If you add properties with Configuration Designer, you can automatically convert these properties to JSON by selecting Enter JSON data from the Configuration settings format dropdown.

Screenshot of Configuration setting format options

Using Configuration Designer

Configuration designer allows you to select pre-populated settings and their associated values.

Screenshot of added configuration settings

The following table lists the Managed Home Screen available configuration keys, value types, default values, and descriptions. The description provides the expected device behavior based on the selected values. Configuration keys that are disabled in Configuration Designer are not listed in the table.

Configuration Key Value Type Default Value Description
Set Grid Size string Auto Allows you to set the grid size for apps to be positioned on the managed home screen. You can set the number of app rows and columns to define grid size in the following format columns;rows. If you define the grid size, the maximum number of apps that will be shown in a row on the home screen would be the number of rows you set and the maximum number of apps that will be shown in a column in the home screen would be the number of columns you set.
Enable Screen Header bool TRUE Enables the top header for different views that the managed home screen offers such as the feed or feed cards. If you enable this setting, the device users will see the header.
Enable device status bar bool TRUE Enables the status bar in the home screen (top bar that displays current connections such as wifi and etc.). If you enable this configuration key, the end user will be able to see the icons displayed on the status bars that represent connections and active apps.
Enable notifications badge bool FALSE Enables the notification badge for app icons that shows the number of new notifications on the app. If you enable this setting, end users will see notification badges on apps that have unread notifications. If you keep this configuration key disabled, the end user will not see any notification badged to apps that might have unread notifications.
Lock Home Screen bool TRUE Removes the ability of the end user to move around app icons on the home screen. If you enable this configuration key, the app icons on the home screen will be locked and the end user would not be able to drag and drop to different grid positions of the home screen. If turned to false, end users will be able to move around application and weblink icons on the Managed Home Screen.
Set device wall paper string Default Allows you to set a wallpaper of your choice by entering the URL of the image that you want to set as a wallpaper.
Set app icon size integer 2 Allows you to set the icon size for apps displayed on the home screen. You can choose the following values in this configuration for different sizes - 0 (Smallest), 1 (Small), 2 (Regular), 3 (Large) and 4 (Largest).
Set app folder icon integer 0 Allows you to define the appearance of app folders on the home screen. You can choose the appearance from following values: Dark Square(0); Dark Circle(1); Light Square(2); Light Circle(3).
Enable gestures bool FALSE Enable the end user's ability to assign actions to different gestures such as swipe up and swipe down. If you disable this configuration key, end users will only be able to swipe right if there is a second page and back to the home page.
Enable vertical scrolling bool FALSE Enables vertical scrolling on the managed home screen. If you enable this configuration key, the end user will only be able to navigate to different pages vertically rather than by swiping horizontally.
Set home screen theme string Theme.Light.Blue Allows you to choose the theme for the home screen from a predefined set of themes with different colors. You can choose the following themes by entering the string value in the following format. Theme.Light.Green. Where light can be replaced with Dark for a dark theme and Green can be replaced by Blue, Yellow, Pink, Red, Orange, and Purple.
Enable dock bool FALSE Enables the app dock section in at bottom of the home screen with persistent apps displayed and entry point for all installed apps. If you enable this configuration key, the end user will be able to access apps in the dock and also access the all app section to go to the list of all installed apps on the devices whether or not they have been allow-listed.
Set screen orientation integer 1 Allows you to set the orientation of the home screen to portrait mode, landscape mode or allow auto rotate. You can set the orientation by entering values 1 (for portrait mode), 2 (for Landscape mode), 3 (for Autorotate).
Enable home screen feed bool FALSE Enables the feed of the home screen, which can be seen by swiping left of the home screen. This feed displays different type of content such as news, calendar, frequently user apps, and Cortana voice assistant card etc. If you enable this, the end user will be able to navigate to the feed by swiping left on the home screen.
Enable overview mode bool FALSE Enables the end users to add or remove different pages on the home screen that can be accessed by swiping right from the default screen. If you enable this, the end user will be able to add paged to the right of the default page of the home screen, will also be able to change the default page, and will also be able to access the settings on the Managed Home Screen.
Enable device telemetry bool FALSE Enables all the telemetry that is being captured for the managed home screen. If you enable this, Microsoft will be able to capture device usage telemetry, such as the number of times a particular app is launched on this device.
Set allow-listed applications bundleArray FALSE Allows you to define the set of apps visible on the home screen from amongst the apps installed on the device. You can define the apps by entering the app package name of the apps that you would like to make visible, for example com.microsoft.emmx would make settings accessible on the home screen. The apps that you allow-list in this section should already be installed on the device in order to be visible on the home screen.
Set pinned web links bundleArray FALSE Allows you to pin websites as quick launch icons on the home screen. With this configuration, you can define the URL and add it to the home screen for the end user to launch in the browser with a single tap.
Enable search bar bool FALSE Enables the search bar on home screen. If you enable this, users of the device will see the search bar on the home screen where they would be able to enter whatever they want to search on the web.
Disable settings app bool FALSE Disables the settings page for the Managed Home Screen. If you disable this, the end user of the device will not be able to get to the settings of the Managed Home Screen.
Enable screen saver bool FALSE To enable screen saver mode or not. If set to true, you can configure screen_saver_image, screen_saver_show_time, inactive_time_to_show_screen_saver, and media_detect_screen_saver.
Screen saver image string Set the URL of the screen saver image. If no URL is set, devices will show the default screen saver image when screen saver is activated. The default image shows the Managed Home Screen app icon.
Screen saver show time integer 0 Gives option to set the amount of time in seconds the device will display the screen saver during screen saver mode. If set to 0, the screen saver will show on screen saver mode indefinitely until the device becomes active.
Inactive time to enable screen saver integer 30 The number of seconds the device is inactive before triggering the screen saver. If set to 0, the device will never go into screen saver mode.
Media detect before showing screen saver bool TRUE Choose whether the device screen should show screen saver if audio/video is playing on device. If set to true, the device will not play audio/video, regardless of the value in inactive_time_to_show_scree_saver. If set to false, device screen will show screen saver according to value set in inactive_time_to_show_screen_saver.
Enable virtual home button bool FALSE Turn this setting to True to allow the end user to have access to a Managed Home Screen home button that will return the user to the Managed Home Screen from the current task they are in.
Type of virtual home button string swipe_up Use swipe_up to access home button with a swipe up gesture. Use float to access a sticky, persistent home button that can be moved around the screen by the end user.
Battery and Signal Strength indicator bar bool True Turning this setting to True shows the battery and signal strength indicator bar.
Exit lock task mode password string Enter a 4-6-digit code to use to temporarily drop out of lock-task mode for troubleshooting.
Show Wi-Fi setting bool FALSE Turning this setting to True allows the end user to turn on or off Wi-Fi, or to connect to different Wi-Fi networks.
Show Bluetooth setting bool FALSE Turning this setting to True allows the end user to turn on or off Bluetooth and to connect to different Bluetooth-capable devices.
Applications in folder are ordered by name bool TRUE Turning this setting to False allows items in a folder to appear in the order in which they are specified. Otherwise, they will appear in the folder alphabetically.
Application order enabled bool FALSE Turning this setting to True allows enables the ability to set the order of applications, weblinks, and folders on the Managed Home Screen. Once enabled, set the ordering with app_order.the end user to turn on or off Bluetooth and to connect to different Bluetooth-capable devices.
Application order bundleArray FALSE Allows you to specify the order of applications, weblinks and folders on the Managed Home Screen. To use this setting, Lock Home Screen must be enabled, Set grid size must be defined and Application order enabled must be set to True.

Enter JSON Data

Enter JSON data to configure all available settings for Managed Home Screen, as well as the settings disabled in Configuration Designer.

Screenshot of added JSON data

In addition to the list of configurable settings listed in the Configuration Designer table (above), the following table provides the configuration keys you can only configure via JSON data.

Configuration Key Value Type Default Value Description
Set allow-listed applications bundleArray JSON - Example 1 Allows you to define the set of apps visible on the home screen from amongst the apps installed on the device. You can define the apps by entering the app package name of the apps that you would like to make visible, for example, com.android.settings would make settings accessible on the home screen. The apps that you allow-list in this section should already be installed on the device in order to be visible on the home screen.
Set pinned web links bundleArray JSON - Example 2 Allows you to pin websites as quick launch icons on the home screen. With this configuration, you can define the URL and add it to the home screen for the end user to launch in the browser with a single tap.
Create Managed Folder for grouping apps bundleArray JSON - Example 3 Allows you to create and name folders and group apps within these folders. End users will not be able to move folders, rename the folders, or move the apps within the folders. Folders will appear in the order created, and apps within the folders will appear alphabetically. Note: all apps that you want to group into folders must be assigned as required to the device and must have been added to the Managed Home Screen.

The following is an example JSON script with all the available configuration keys included:

{
    "kind": "androidenterprise#managedConfiguration",
    "productId": "com.microsoft.launcher.enterprise",
    "managedProperty": [
        {
            "key": "keep_page_header",
            "valueBool": true
        },
        {
            "key": "keep_status_bar",
            "valueBool": true
        },
        {
            "key": "show_notification_badge",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "lock_home_screen",
            "valueBool": true
        },
        {
            "key": "wallpaper",
            "valueString": "default"
        },
        {
            "key": "icon_size",
            "valueInteger": 2
        },
        {
            "key": "app_folder_icon",
            "valueInteger": 0
        },
        {
            "key": "gesture_on",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "vertical_scrolling",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "theme",
            "valueString": "Theme.Light.Blue"
        },
        {
            "key": "dock_enable",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "screen_orientation",
            "valueInteger": 1
        },
        {
            "key": "feed_enable",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "allow_overview_mode",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "enable_telemetry",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "applications",
            "valueBundleArray": [
                {
                    "managedProperty": [
                        {
                            "key": "package",
                            "valueString": “app package name here”
                        }
                    ]
                }
            ]
        },
        {
            "key": "weblinks",
            "valueBundleArray": [
                {
                    "managedProperty": [
                        {
                            "key": "link",
                            "valueString": “link here”
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "label",
                            "valueString": “weblink label here”
                        }
                    ]
                }
            ]
        },
        {
            "key": "search_bar",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "hide_settings",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "show_virtual_home",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "virtual_home_type",
            "valueString": "swipe_up"
        },
        {
            "key": "show_virtual_status_bar",
            "valueBool": true
        },
        {
            "key": "exit_lock_task_mode_code",
            "valueString": ""
        },
        {
            "key": "show_wifi_setting",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "show_bluetooth_setting",
            "valueBool": false
        },
        {
            "key": "grid_size",
            "valueString": "4;5"
        },
        {
            "key": "app_order_enabled",
            "valueBool": true
        },
        {
            "key": "apps_in_folder_ordered_by_name",
            "valueBool": true
        },
        {
            "key": "app_orders",
            "valueBundleArray": [
                {
                    "managedProperty": [
                        {
                            "key": "package",
                            "valueString": "com.Microsoft.emmx"
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "type",
                            "valueString": "application"
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "container",
                            "valueInteger": 1
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "position",
                            "valueInteger": 1
                        }
                    ]
                },
                {
                    "managedProperty": [
                        {
                            "key": "folder_name",
                            "valueString": "Work"
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "type",
                            "valueString": "managed_folder"
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "container",
                            "valueInteger": 1
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "position",
                            "valueInteger": 2
                        }
                    ]
                },
                {
                    "managedProperty": [
                        {
                            "key": "package",
                            "valueString": "com.microsoft.launcher.enterprise"
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "type",
                            "valueString": "application"
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "class",
                            "valueString": "com.microsoft.launcher.launcher"
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "container",
                            "valueInteger": 1
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "position",
                            "valueInteger": 3
                        }
                    ]
                }
            ]
        },
        {
            "key": "managed_folders",
            "valueBundleArray": [
                {
                    "managedProperty": [
                        {
                            "key": "folder_name",
                            "valueString": "Folder name here"
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "applications",
                            "valueBundleArray": [
                                {
                                    "managedProperty": [
                                        {
                                            "key": "package",
                                            "valueString": "com.microsoft.emmx"
                                        }
                                    ]
                                },
                                {
                                    "managedProperty": [
                                        {
                                            "key": "package",
                                            "valueString": "com.microsoft.bing"
                                        }
                                    ]
                                },
                                {
                                    "managedProperty": [
                                        {
                                            "key": "link",
                                            "valueString": "https://microsoft.com/"
                                        }
                                    ]
                                }
                            ]
                        }
                    ]
                },
                {
                    "managedProperty": [
                        {
                            "key": "folder_name",
                            "valueString": "Example folder name 2"
                        },
                        {
                            "key": "applications",
                            "valueBundleArray": [
                                {
                                    "managedProperty": [
                                        {
                                            "key": "package",
                                            "valueString": "com.microsoft.office.word"
                                        }
                                    ]
                                }
                            ]
                        }
                    ]
                }
            ]
        }
    ]
}

Google's Android Device Policy app

The Managed Home Screen app now provides access to Google's Android Device Policy app. The Managed Home Screen app is a custom launcher used for devices enrolled in Intune as Android Enterprise (AE) dedicated devices using multi-app kiosk mode. You can access the Android Device Policy app, or guide users to the Android Device Policy app, for support and debug purposes. This launching capability is available at the time the device enrolls and locks into Managed Home Screen. No additional installations are needed to use this functionality.

Managed Home Screen debug screen

You can access the Managed Home Screen's debug screen by clicking the back button until the debug screen is displayed (click the back button 15 times or more). From this debug screen, you are able to launch the Android Device Policy application, view and upload logs, or temporarily pause kiosk mode to update the device. For more information about pausing kiosk mode, see the Leave kiosk mode item in the Android Enterprise dedicated device settings.

Next steps