While companies, governments and organizations are slowly returning to the office, the COVID-19 pandemic has changed the future of work forever. A remote-everything, work-from-anywhere environment is now the new normal. That’s why VMware, Inc. today introduced new and expanded capabilities to empower customers, help improve business resilience, and prepare for the new distributed, hybrid workforce of the future. These capabilities include a suite of new workplace solutions and new features in VMware Workspace ONE Intelligent Hub built specifically to help customers bring employees back to the office safely. VMware is also introducing enhancements to its flagship virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) platform, VMware Horizon 8, a truly modern, future-ready solution for more secure delivery and management of virtual desktops and applications across the hybrid cloud.
“Remote work may no longer be considered a luxury, but a necessity, in this new working environment. In fact, remote work has essentially redrawn the lines where personal connections have improved, recruitment is easier, and companies can adapt faster. And technology has allowed us to adjust the way we work in a seamless way,” said Shankar Iyer, senior vice president and general manager, End-User Computing, VMware. “Our announcements on solutions for the re-imagined workplace with Workspace ONE Proximity and Workspace ONE Campus, together with the launch of the first, truly modern platform for virtual desktops and apps are strategic and mission-critical to the distributed workforce. Strong adoption of our solutions validates our commitment to meet customers’ needs as they adapt to the new normal.”
VMware Announces New Workplace Solutions for the Future-Ready Workforce
To support the needs of the modern workforce, VMware plans to deliver a suite of new workplace solutions powered by the Workspace ONE platform. Designed to help VMware customers enable office experiences of the future, these solutions are two new privacy-centric mobile applications – VMware Workspace ONE Proximity* and VMware Workspace ONE Campus*.
With Workspace ONE Proximity, customers can help return employees to the office by utilizing Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacons to give employees insight into potential exposure, notify colleagues of changing conditions, and help recount whereabouts and interactions within an office. As organizations re-design their workplaces, Workspace ONE Campus will be designed to leverage the same beacon infrastructure to support desk and meeting room booking, and wayfinding, further elevating the future workplace experience. Implementing these new workplace solutions will help organizations leverage the infrastructure they already have in place to support vital reopening tasks and future workplace initiatives, such as:
- Self-reporting and automatic proximity notifications
- Tools to help employees recall their whereabouts
- Admin visibility into areas that require deep cleaning
- Occupancy limits and physical distancing
- Omnichannel communication strategies
- Digital badge for entry, kiosks, printing, and more
- Desk and conference room booking
- Office navigation
Through close partnership with internal multidisciplinary teams tasked at bringing employees back to the office safely, VMware leveraged its own Workspace ONE infrastructure to test and is actively working to implement these solutions. The teams have been able to continuously learn throughout this process and adapt the solutions to meet the complex, evolving needs of large global organizations during the pandemic.
A Modern Desktop and Application Delivery Platform
As employees globally are increasingly working from anywhere due to the pandemic, they need quick and more secure access to corporate resources. VMware is introducing Horizon 8, designed to help IT teams more efficiently manage and easily scale virtual desktop and application delivery from a single control plane across public and private clouds. Unlike legacy VDI products, VMware Horizon 8 empowers IT with Instant Clone technology that rapidly provisions full-featured, personalized virtual desktops and applications, powered by proprietary integration with industry-leading VMware vSphere technology. The modern platform further simplifies and automates Day Two management of images, applications, profiles, and policies by leveraging VMware App Volumes and Dynamic Environment Manager technologies to save IT time and reduce costs. VMware Horizon 8 introduces several new key capabilities including:
- Expanded Hybrid and Multi-cloud Deployment Options – Customers can leverage the cloud or clouds of their choice to cost-effectively deliver VDI and application capabilities on managed infrastructure, quickly scaling and provisioning workloads with the feature-rich VMware Horizon platform. Support for VMware Horizon on Google Cloud VMware Engine and VMware Horizon on VMware Cloud on Dell EMC is now available. Support for VMware Horizon on Azure VMware Solution (AVS) is expected to be available upon general availability of that service. Each of these VMware Cloud Verified services is built on VMware Cloud Foundation, allowing VMware Horizon customers to further leverage their VMware expertise and investments.
- New Instant Clone Capabilities: Instant Clone Smart Provisioning helps IT directly provision instant clones without requiring a parent VM, freeing up greater memory resources and increasing desktops per host, reducing VDI and published application costs. Further Instant Clone innovations include dynamic pool expansion and elastic DRS to quickly scale demand up and down across public and private clouds hosting VMware Horizon, for example with VMware Cloud on AWS, to meet urgent needs to support their distributed workforces
- VMware Horizon REST APIs: New RESTful APIs help automate rich capabilities available in VMware Horizon 8, including monitoring, entitlements, and user and machine management. IT can easily interact with VMware Horizon 8 for added flexibility, distributing and accessing information, and modernizing services with speed.
- Unified Communications and Collaboration Support: With growing demand for collaboration tools to support distributed workforces, VMware Horizon now offers an optimized experience for Microsoft Teams video and audio, in addition to Zoom and Cisco Webex, that enables improved productivity and a better user experience from virtual desktops.
- Linux-Hosted Applications: Linux applications can now be published directly from a Linux server in the VMware Horizon platform, helping reduce costs associated with licenses from other operating system platforms.
Customers leveraging VMware Horizon 8 can also use the same control plane to deploy and manage hybrid environments that extend to VMware Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure, one of VMware’s desktop-as-a-service offerings. VMware Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure supports the features of Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop, including Windows 10 Enterprise multi-session, and recently added support for VMware App Volumes, giving customers the ability to package an application once and deploy it to any VMware Horizon platform. This reduces the size and complexity of base images reducing IT time and cost, and cross-platform integration means that customers can consolidate resources and simplify management.
By leveraging more unique integrations with trusted VMware infrastructure and technology, VMware Horizon 8 helps IT teams deliver more secure virtual workspaces that protect their network while extending the best digital workspace experience to all desktops and applications. By using VMware Workspace ONE Access, IT can establish and verify end user identity with built-in multi-factor authentication, and it serves as the basis for conditional access policies for VMware Horizon virtual desktops and applications. Additional security features from VMware technologies across the network, like NSX Advanced Load Balancer (Avi Networks) and VMware SD-WAN by VeloCloud, can be leveraged by VMware Horizon. With next generation endpoint protection from VMware Carbon Black, IT can prevent, detect and respond to advanced attacks with a cloud native platform supporting VMware Horizon virtual desktops and applications. These intrinsic security elements help facilitate a zero-trust security model that protects access to virtual desktops and applications enabled across public and private clouds.
“VMware’s customers specifically mentioned the value gained by leveraging the VMware Horizon solution as a component of the company’s overall software-defined datacenter platform,” said Shannon Kalvar, IT Service Management and Client Virtualization for IDC, in an IDC MarketScape report titled Worldwide Virtual Client Computing 2019–2020 Vendor Assessment. “Unifying physical device management (including PCs, Chromebooks, and phones), digital workspace creation/operations, and client workspace security into the overall platform is an attractive proposition for customers that are already invested in it.”
VMware Workspace ONE Proximity is currently in beta and more information on VMware Workspace ONE Campus will be available in the coming months. VMware Horizon 8 is expected to be available in VMware’s Fiscal Q3 FY21, ending on October 30, 2020.
- For more information on VMware’s business continuity solutions, visit www.vmware.com/solutions/business-continuity.
- For more information on VMware Workspace ONE Proximity, visit https://beta-ea.vmware.com/key/getbeta.
- Read more about VMware workplace solutions on this blog.
- For more information on VMware Horizon, visit www.vmware.com/go/horizon.
- Read more about VMware Horizon 8 on this blog.
- Learn more about VMware’s digital workspace platform, VMware Workspace ONE.
- Bookmark the VMware End-User Computing blog.
- Get all Workspace ONE updates on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
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VMware software powers the world’s complex digital infrastructure. The company’s cloud, app modernization, networking, security, and digital workspace offerings help customers deliver any application on any cloud across any device. Headquartered in Palo Alto, California, VMware is committed to being a force for good, from its breakthrough technology innovations to its global impact. For more information, please visit https://www.vmware.com/company.html.