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Multi-Identity Support in iOS Apps (Word, Excel, OneDrive, Outlook)

%3CLINGO-SUB%20id%3D%22lingo-sub-1042618%22%20slang%3D%22en-US%22%3EMulti-Identity%20Support%20in%20iOS%20Apps%20(Word%2C%20Excel%2C%20OneDrive%2C%20Outlook)%3C%2FLINGO-SUB%3E%3CLINGO-BODY%20id%3D%22lingo-body-1042618%22%20slang%3D%22en-US%22%3E%3CP%3EI've%20been%20experimenting%20with%20App%20Protection%20Policies%20I%20need%20someone%20to%20clarify%20something%20for%20me.%26nbsp%3B%20Apps%20can%20be%20written%20in%20a%20way%20that%20supports%20multi-identity%20so%20as%20to%20not%20interfere%20with%20users%20using%20apps%20for%20personal%20reasons.%26nbsp%3B%20This%20works%20great%20in%20Outlook%20and%20OneDrive%20where%20they%20make%20it%20very%20easy%20to%20switch%20between%20corporate%20and%20personal%20accounts.%26nbsp%3B%20In%20Word%20and%20Excel%20(and%20I%20assume%20PowerPoint)%2C%20it%20seems%20that%20the%20user%20is%20required%20to%20log%20out%20of%20corporate%20identity%20entirely%20when%20using%20the%20app%20because%20you%20can't%20have%20multiple%20identities%20logged%20in%20at%20one%20time.%26nbsp%3B%20This%20means%20that%20if%20a%20user%20opens%20a%20.docx%20attachment%20from%20Gmail%20and%20opens%20it%20in%20Word%2C%20it%20automatically%20gets%20sucked%20into%20the%20corporate%20environment%20with%20no%20way%20out%20other%20than%20not%20saving%20it.%26nbsp%3B%20Similarly%2C%20they%20can't%20start%20a%20personal%20Word%20document%20without%20logging%20out%20of%20the%20corporate%20identity.%3C%2FP%3E%3CP%3E%26nbsp%3B%3C%2FP%3E%3CP%3EIs%20there%20really%20no%20way%20to%20easily%20switch%20between%20two%20logged-in%20identities%20similar%20to%20the%20way%20Outlook%20and%20OneDrive%20let%20you%20do%20it%3F%26nbsp%3B%20If%20not%2C%20what%20exactly%20is%20multi-identity%20about%20the%20iOS%20Office%20apps%3F%3C%2FP%3E%3C%2FLINGO-BODY%3E%3CLINGO-LABS%20id%3D%22lingo-labs-1042618%22%20slang%3D%22en-US%22%3E%3CLINGO-LABEL%3EApp%20Protection%20Policy%3C%2FLINGO-LABEL%3E%3CLINGO-LABEL%3EIntune%3C%2FLINGO-LABEL%3E%3C%2FLINGO-LABS%3E
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Philip Kluss
Contributor

I've been experimenting with App Protection Policies I need someone to clarify something for me.  Apps can be written in a way that supports multi-identity so as to not interfere with users using apps for personal reasons.  This works great in Outlook and OneDrive where they make it very easy to switch between corporate and personal accounts.  In Word and Excel (and I assume PowerPoint), it seems that the user is required to log out of corporate identity entirely when using the app because you can't have multiple identities logged in at one time.  This means that if a user opens a .docx attachment from Gmail and opens it in Word, it automatically gets sucked into the corporate environment with no way out other than not saving it.  Similarly, they can't start a personal Word document without logging out of the corporate identity.

 

Is there really no way to easily switch between two logged-in identities similar to the way Outlook and OneDrive let you do it?  If not, what exactly is multi-identity about the iOS Office apps?

1 Reply
Solution

After toying around with it a bit more, I think I've come to an understanding of how this is accomplished.  It does work correctly, just not in the way that I first expected it to.  I was incorrect in my assertion I had to log out of my corporate identity to save a new Word document to store it in a non-managed location.  I was able to start a .docx and then save directly to my iPhone.  I was then able to see the device in Files - On My iPhone - Word.  As soon as I saved it to a managed location under my corporate identity, I was no longer able to move it to an unmanaged location as expected.  Similarly, I got the behavior I expected when I opened a .docx from the Gmail app.