Windows Intune, Microsoft's cloud-based MDM (mobile device management) service, has been updated this week with support for Windows Phone 8.1 and the Samsung KNOX security standard. These changes were promised back in March, and today's announcement fulfills those promises.

This is the second update to Intune this year. Back in January, the firm added support for iOS 7 MDM features, email profiles, and remote lock and remote password reset to Intune. In March, Microsoft revealed that it would add support for Windows Phone 8.1 and the Samsung KNOX platform.

So. What does this update entail?

Windows Phone 8.1 support includes additional device configuration settings, software installation (sideloading) enhancements, selective wipe (something iOS got last year, by the way), support for Web Authentication Broker (WAB) enrollment, and automatic MDM certificate renewal.

The Samsung KNOW support includes setting device configuration settings directly through KNOX Standard (formerly Samsung SAFE) as well as through Exchange ActiveSync. No configuration settings have changed, but Microsoft is looking into releasing additional KNOX Standard-specific settings at a later date. (You can learn more about KNOX from the Samsung web site. This technology is available on some newer Samsung devices.)

Microsoft says the updates to Windows Intune will begin rolling out to customers today. They should be completely deployed by May 21. If you're using Windows Intune with System Center Configuration Manager, you should see these new capabilities be made available through Extensions for Windows Intune in mid-May. New trial and paid subscriptions created after May 9 will automatically have these new updates.

In addition to these service-level changes, Microsoft also updated the Company Portal apps for iOS (download here) and Android (download here). The new versions enable user to remotely access their Windows PC from their devices if this is configured by the administrator.