Microsoft Intune will likely affect the EMM market, but which vendors and how much?

2015 is expected to be the year Microsoft becomes a major player in the enterprise mobility management space.

2015 is expected to be the year Microsoft becomes a major player in the enterprise mobility management space, so naturally the question is how that will affect other vendors. To shed some light, I’m going to take a look some of the recent numbers that have come out, and in particular I’ll also look at how it could affect the Microsoft and Citrix relationship. 

First, why is everybody talking about Microsoft and EMM right now? There are certainly some quirks and caveats to take into account. There was a minor backlash over the security of Accompli the new Outlook app. Then there’s the fact that all of this is just a prediction for right now.

But overall, Microsoft has everything it needs for Intune and the Enterprise Mobility Suite (EMS) to take off: It has MDM; productivity apps (including the real Office!); enterprise file sync and share; identity and access management; app wrapping; and most import, they’re Microsoft. They can push customers to add Intune and EMS to their Enterprise Agreements with the new Enterprise Cloud Suite plan. The bottom line is that Microsoft is the EMM vendor to watch for 2015.

Of course EMM is a growing market, it’s not like Intune and EMS are suddenly going to completely wipe out any other competitors—there are all types of EMM companies that will continue to grow. However, it is another serious offering to put on the short list now.

Now let’s look to other players in the market:

MobileIron just reported gross billings of $145.7 million for 2014, up 45% over last year. They widely touted their $100 million number in 2013, too.

Citrix doesn’t break out individual numbers for EMM, but in their 2014 earnings call they said that mobility is a “$150 million-plus area for [them] and growing nicely.” That includes both XenMobile and ShareFile, and they didn’t break that down except to say that XenMobile bookings grew 100% in 2014. 

Similarly, VMware doesn’t break out specific AirWatch numbers, but in their earnings call they mentioned AirWatch bookings of over $200 million. There weren’t any published numbers for AirWatch in 2013, but word on the street around the time of the acquisition was that it was $70 million, putting them at 185% growth (thanks in large part to their being part of VMware now). We don’t know what part of this breaks down into Secure Content Locker, but enterprise file sync and share has been a major push for them over the last year or so.

Since Good’s IPO has been delayed, we don’t have the whole picture of their 2014 numbers, but according to recent filings, their revenue for the first three quarters of 2014 was $152.7 million. 2013 was $160.4 million for the year. This puts them in a comfortable position in the EMM space.

Dozens of other enterprise mobility and EMM vendors are reporting growth, too. So good for EMM and enterprise mobility—EMM is not going to be another VDI!

Anyway, now that we know the position of some of these players, let’s see how they could be affected by Microsoft.

For both Good and MobileIron, there’s a strong arguement that if you’re going for either one of them, you’re doing so for specific reasons, respectively. Both should be less affected by Intune.

For AirWatch, Intune could take some of their business doing simpler, mid-market use cases. There’s also the trend of companies moving from vSphere to Hyper-V, which could have an effect on AirWatch versus Intune decisions, too.

Then there’s Citrix. At we’ve been writing “Is Microsoft going to kill Citrix?” articles for years. In the desktop virtualization space, the story has always been that Citrix has a symbiotic, “embrace and extended” relationship with Microsoft. Anyone buying XenApp or XenDesktop licenses is also buying Windows licenses in one way or another. And even as Microsoft improves its desktop virtualization products, Citrix is a couple of steps ahead.

But that breaks down in the mobile space—frankly, they’re much more in direct competition with each other: iOS devices can only be linked to one MDM server; app wrapping and SDKs for MAM are incompatible between vendors; and many of Citrix’s apps are in direct competition with Microsoft apps. Sure, there are a lot of ways you can use MAM or apps from one vendor on top of MDM from another, and in this case the most likely reason for this would probably be to use XenMobile to push out mobile Office apps. But remember that Office 365 is going to come with MDM, and Microsoft is pushing the bundle of Office 365 plus Intune and EMS anyway.

The bottom line for Citrix and Microsoft for mobile? Less embrace and extend, more direct competition.

To re-iterate, overall I’ll not spelling doom and gloom for Citrix or any other vendor in the EMM space, I’m just saying there’s going to be one more vendor taking a slice of the EMM market pie. And it’s a pie that happens to be growing, so everyone should still be happy. (I want that type of pie in real life!) But I’m sure that all of them—especially AirWatch and Citrix—are keeping a wary eye on Microsoft.

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Small addition: MDM in Office 365 is like EAS in Exchange 20xx: it's not the same as the functionality offered with Intune, as part of EMS.

I do also expect a lot from Windows 10 and that 'Universal App-thing'. Let's assume that might drive the adoption in the phone and tablet business, Intune is the obvious solution to manage those devices.


Talking about numbers, did you notice that MobileIron did $145m in bookings with about 500 employees, while Airwatch did $200m in booking with about 2000 employees? Why is Airwatch so much less efficient than MobileIron? Why is MobileIron slowing down dramatically after being the fastest growing company for 5 years?


It's worth noting that while, yeah, MDM is "solved" and pretty much equal across vendors, most organizations are still starting with basic MDM. So yet another good move by Microsoft is essentially giving away very basic MDM for free, which locks organizations in with Microsoft's mobility management and allows them to mature into advanced EMM as InTune does.

It remains to be seen if it's still too little too late, like Windows Phone.


> First, why is everybody talking about Microsoft and EMM right now?

I don't think they are ...

> Why is MobileIron slowing down dramatically

Many customers put it in for basic MDM, but were never really happy with it... they've since shopped around around found other solutions from Citrix, MaaS360, AirWatch...

Most clients are not locked in on one MDM... many are willing to change.  MDM isn't like an ERP solution  :-)