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Citrix Closes Mobility Management Gap with XenMobile

Citrix melds mobile application management technology from recent ZenPrise acquisition into new offering.

Citrix today debuted XenMobile, it's all encompassing solution for mobile and device management and the applications that run on them. Much of the underlying device management aspects of the new offering were derived from Zenprise technology. Citrix acquired ZenPrise back in January.

"A lot of our customers were asking us for more than the capabilities in the MDM stack, whether it be to audit a device, or wipe it or encrypt it, etc.," said Natalie Lambert, product marketing director for Citrix, during a phone briefing last week. "What we really needed was a holistic solution that would address every way a customer would want to use devices, not just applications." With XenMobile, she said she believes Citrix is the first vendor to offer such a comprehensive solution.

"We'll be offering full device lifecycle management to corporate-owned as well as BYOD devices. We recognize that there are all types of devices and ownership models. IT really does struggle with creating a set of policies that are applicable on some devices and not having policies apply on other devices," she said. Lambert specified that IT can manage those policies at a granular level per device.

Lambert said that XenMobile tackles these three main areas:

Full device lifecycle management: Underlying this capability is the technology from ZenPrise. It essentially allows IT to manage device policies at a granular level, whether devices are corporate owned or used in a BYOD scenario.

Data management capabilities: These will come via integration with Citrix ShareFiles, where users are able to get policy-based access to data on any device, while IT still maintains control. Allowing SharePoint project files and data to be shared among collaborating members via any device is an example of one such feature.

Application management capabilities: XenMobile will allow access to native mobile and tablet applications, as well as SaaS apps. But Lambert emphasized the importance of allowing users to access native Windows and datacenter applications that may never be developed outside of those environments. Even those non-native mobile apps will be available through mobility, she said.

Lambert believes the company has achieved it by providing a customizable, enterprise-grade MDM solution. XenMobile sports other features as well, including a native, policy-driven mail and data client. It also has a browser that's integrated with mail and allows for some of the application access. The browser includes a micro-VPN for allowing access to apps that require VPN access.

Citrix even went so far as to created what Lambert called a unified app store. It's what allows users to gain access to mobile and SaaS apps, as well as Windows and datacenter apps via Citrix Receiver.

Citrix XenMobile will be released Feb. 24 and will be priced at $40 per device per year when purchased as a stand-alone product; it'll also be available integrated into the Mobile Solutions Bundle, consisting of XenMobile and Citrix Cloud Gateway.

About the Author

Michael Domingo is Editor in Chief of Virtualization Review. He's been an IT writer and editor for so long that he remember typing out news items in WordStar.

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