VMware made a slew of announcements at VMworld this week. There's a strategic alliance with Symantec to deliver desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) solutions, a partnership with Samsung to virtualize mobile devices, collaboration with Cisco on cloud innovation, a Dell cloud deal, and much more.
That much more includes VMware's pitch into the much-talked-about post-PC era. This buzzword started with Microsoft, continued with .com, and is now getting air time with VMware as the firm announces new products and services aimed at this market.
Christopher Young, vice president and general manager of end-user computing at VMware, is promising a better way to deliver Windows-based DaaS as consumers begin to embrace the shift to the post-PC era. He also said the company is "investing in expertise and delivering the open products needed to accelerate the journey to a new way to work beyond the Windows desktop."
The Post-PC Era
VMware View 5 will roll out in the coming weeks. View 5 will deliver protocol enhancements that the firm said provide as much as 75 percent bandwidth improvement over LAN and WAN connections; advanced support for 3D graphics; scalable unified communications integration for voice and video media services with industry leaders, including Avaya and Mitel; and virtual desktop personalization with integrated management.
"VMware View-based solutions have been successfully deployed across thousands of desktops in numerous organizations, and there were suggestions at VMworld that at least one substantially larger customer deployment is in the works," said Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT. "If this momentum continues or increases, the future of hosted virtual desktops looks very rosy, indeed."
Targeting Small Businesses
VMware is also working to entice small enterprises with a new iteration of its vCloud offerings. VMware and its partners are delivering Global Cloud, vCloud portal and vCloud connector to simplify access and management. Will the new offerings help attract the lucrative small-business market?
How small businesses can best gain the benefits of cloud computing has been a contentious issue for some time, mainly due to smaller organizations' inherent financial and technological constraints, King noted. Virtualization vendors, including VMware, are targeting small businesses with tailored solutions, but most are also working with service-provider partners that are delivering cloud-hosted services designed for small companies.
"VMware's new and updated vCloud solutions should help enhance small-business solutions developed by the company's 5,600-plus server-provider partners in 67 countries," King said. "But one of the most intriguing related announcements was actually made by Dell at Salesforce.com's Dreamforce event in San Francisco."
Dell's Cloud Moves
Beyond Dell announcing its first public cloud offering via VMware, the server maker is expanding its partnership with Salesforce to deliver an integrated CRM solution by connecting the Salesforce Sales Cloud to back-office applications like QuickBooks and Microsoft Dynamics GP. Since the offering will include cross-application reporting, Dell said it will give CXOs better visibility into their business.
"Dell plans to expand its Cloud Business Applications service over time to include application integration -- based on its Boomi technologies -- real-time business analytics features and integration with Dell service offerings," King said. "Overall, this seems a forward-looking move by a company that has set its sights firmly on leveraging cloud technologies to improve the lives of small-business customers."