If your VPP deployment consists of iOS 9+ or macOS 10.11+ devices, consider enabling the assignment of Volume Purchase Program (VPP) applications by device serial number. This method has benefits including that it removes the need to invite users to the VPP program

Deploy device-based VPP applications using the outlined processes in Managed Distribution and AirWatch.

AirWatch does not migrate applications to the device-based system. VPP applications already assigned to Apple IDs remain assigned as such.


The device-based system offers several advantages.

  • Users do not have to accept invitations and register with the VPP.
  • Admins with multiple sTokens in their VPP deployment do not have to manage invitations.
  • Admins do not have to manage Apple IDs.


Device-based assignment is the best choice for deployments in the following scenarios:

  • Shared devices with check-in and check-out systems
  • Corporate owned devices
  • Staged environments with one-device-to-one-user ratios
  • Devices in an AirWatch for Education deployment

The user-based system is the best choice for the following scenarios:

  • Multiple devices assigned to a single Apple ID
  • Need to conserve licenses

Supported Platforms and Operating Systems

Configure a supported OS to use the device-based method to distribute applications acquired through Apple's Volume Purchase Program (VPP).

  • iOS 9+
  • macOS 10.11+

App Eligibility

Developers of VPP applications must enable the applications for use in the device-based VPP.


With the Apple ID removed from the process, the device-based method no longer relies on invitations to register Apple IDs. However, if a device meets the requirements, the system still sends invitations.

  • Device does not use iOS 9+ or macOS 10.11+
  • App is not enabled for device-based VPP use
  • Device receives a user-based VPP application
  • Automatically Send Invites is enabled in AirWatch

See Device-Based VPP Overview for an outline of the steps to add VPP applications with the device-based method.