VMware and its enterprise mobility arm, AirWatch, on Oct. 5 launched both a new category of software and a new endpoint management package to go into it.
At the Connect 2016 conference in Atlanta, the company unveiled AirWatch Unified Endpoint Management and a new version of VMware Workspace ONE. The package expands VMware AirWatch into cloud-based management for conventional desktops and new-age connected devices while providing users with the apps and services they need to work digitally, according to the company.
VMware Airwatch also revealed new support for internet of things (IoT) devices, touchless sensors and enterprise-level smart glasses on the same mobility management platform.
Smart glasses in the near future are expected to replace those hideously big augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) headsets. The smaller, lighter, more portable glasses are still ahead of their time, but the potential market is expected to amount to about 16 million units by 2020, according to Gartner Research analyst Angela McIntyre.
Smart Glasses a Thing of the Future
VMware Airwatch said it has deals lined up with major providers of smart glasses—which include Intel, Atheer, ODG and APX Labs—to onboard the software, connect to networks and deploy AR and VR apps.
The AirWatch Unified Endpoint Management and VMware Workspace ONE developments are the biggest news in the mobility sector in months.
"In the nearly 10 years since the launch of the iPhone, enterprise mobility management has transformed from simple wipe and lock commands to a unified endpoint management platform for all devices, including Windows 10 and the internet of things," said Noah Wasmer, VMware's senior vice president of mobile products. "No longer will IT run different systems for different devices; instead we built the single platform to manage all endpoints."
Rethinking Legacy Desktop and Laptop Management
Unified Endpoint Management provides a holistic and user-centric approach to managing all endpoints in an organization, from mobile and desktop to IoT. It is available as a standalone solution or as a part of VMware Workspace ONE and includes configuration management, operating system (OS) patch management, client health and security management.
Workspace ONE, launched earlier this year, enables organizations to scale and tailor their management across unmanaged, BYO (bring your own) and corporate-owned devices in a single platform. The flexible mobile application management framework with adaptive management technologies provides organizations a way to manage all use cases, from standalone mobile application management (MAM) for containerized enterprise apps, to a managed workspace with OS-level MAM, to full device management, Wasmer said.
In this latest update to Workspace ONE, VMware provides real-time security across apps through expanded support for multi-device BYOD employees and contractors with new continuous-access policies and consumer-simple application support. These include:
--Continuous-access policies that can instantly block access to an application already in use if a device fails compliance tests. A real-life example of this uses beacon technology to create a tightly controlled geographic perimeter. Once removed from the beacon's proximity, the application may be immediately blocked or removed.
--Internally developed mobile applications that can now be distributed to unmanaged devices directly through the Workspace ONE app catalog without requiring applications to be loaded into public app stores, greatly simplifying the delivery of new business innovations to employees.
--Device compliance-based conditional access for VMware Horizon apps and desktops to extend VMware's access policy engine for virtual apps and desktops.