This week at our iForum Singapore event Adam Jaques and Gordon Payne demonstrated an early version of the Citrix Receiver for the Android operating system.
|UPDATE August 3rd: See the announcement and demo: http://community.citrix.com/blogs/citrite/adamj/2009/07/29/Citrix+Receiver+for+Android+Demonstration+Video||
I’m excited about this, first because it’s being developed in Citrix Labs, and what’s more in Citrix Labs Sydney. I’m more excited because it brings Citrix ever closer to ubiquity on the smart phone – we have a client for Windows mobile, a receiver for the iPhone, an alpha receiver for the Blackberry, and soon a receiver for Android.
This is really important for Citrix and for our customers because the age of Smartphones has begun, and the mobile device, and mobile experience, will never be the same again. Citrix is helping make this happen by making the Smartphone enterprise friendly by bringing ‘every’ enterprise application to the Smartphone, no matter what variety; be it Windows, web or other.
For many, the Smartphone will be (or already is) the major connection to the web, the Internet and to the work environment. This brings new challenges for information and security management in every organization.
To address these challenges Citrix Labs is working closely with Open Kernel Laboratories to bring cutting edge laptop management approaches to the world of the Smartphone. In much the same way that the XenClient initiative (originally Project Independence) is bringing new capabilities for laptop management, there is an opportunity to combine the new Android Receiver, secure virtual cell technology from OK Labs, and a management infrastructure to create separate personal and enterprise cells on a given Android device. This is an ambitious goal, but one that could open up a new age of Enterprise managed mobile devices.
In a press release in May, Martin Duursma (VP of Citrix Labs) put it like this:
“Working together on mobile-to-enterprise virtualization (M2E), Citrix and OK Labs will enable handset OEMs, MNOs, or enterprises to deliver enterprise applications and content to any mobile device through an OK Labs implementation of Citrix Receiver for the OK Labs mobile phone virtualization platform,” said Martin Duursma, Vice President, Citrix Labs. “Today’s announcement broadens the Citrix vision of Project Independence for local desktop virtualization and desktop computing and applies it to enterprise application and desktop delivery into mobile devices.”
Steve Subar (CEO of OK Labs) puts it like this:
“To address the security requirements of enterprise IT and the personalization preferences of mobile workers, mobile-to-enterprise virtualization (M2E) will enable a secure corporate cell on a mobile device where the receiver function is protected from the security breach of a personal cell. This solution will enable mobile phone users and Corporate IT to leverage best of both worlds – open, unfettered access to personal consumer applications and data with secure, controlled access to enterprise applications and desktops. In addition, M2E will make possible the centralized remote management of the corporate IT cell across all user devices.”
My view – we’re in for a gloriously interesting next few years with rapid changes coming from consumerization married with Smartphone technological innovation. With the Citrix receiver providing EVERY enterprise application on EVERY Smartphone, Citrix is definitely along for the ride.