The BrianMadden.com VMworld 2016 preview post (Part 1)

VMworld is coming up: Workspace One looks great, but what’s the latest with Windows 10 and project A^2?

VMworld is less than two weeks away, so it’s time to talk about what we’re expecting and what’s on our minds before the show. Today I’m going to talk about mobility, identity, and device management, and later on Gabe will cover desktop virtualization (here).

Workspace One

VMware already hit a significant end user computing milestone earlier this year with the launch of Workspace One. Workspace One unified the app catalogs for Identity Manager, Horizon, and AirWatch into a single app (available in mobile, desktop, and web versions), and continued the work of building backend integrations between all of these products.

Workspace One is a significant milestone for two reasons. First, because it brings together so many aspects of EUC, including identity, mobility, web apps, and virtual desktops. Second, because VMware has been talking about this vision for years. It started with Project Horizon in 2010, and then really accelerated after the AirWatch acquisition in 2014. There were also some important integration steps that came out last year.

At VMworld, VMware will want to show off their progress and encourage more customers to embrace identity management, EMM, and other EUC advancements. These tools should all be more appealing now that they’re more integrated with each other.

Of course, we’ll likely see a variety of other new feature refinements at VMworld. Already we saw a new version of the Workspace One app in July in support of AirWatch’s more flexible MDM approach announced in June.

Windows 10

This brings us to what I’m most interested in getting from VMworld: an update on VMware’s Windows 10 strategy.

Last year, managing Windows 10 with MDM was one of the big topics of the show. VMware also announced a technical preview called Project A², which used App Volumes to manage classic Windows apps on devices managed with AirWatch.

For a few months there was buzz around Project A², but so far in 2016 VMware hasn’t said much about it. And while they've still been talking about MDM for Windows 10 in general, so far there's only one unofficial customer reference. In July, VMware added another component to their Windows strategy by announcing TrustPoint, an endpoint security and threat detection product OEM’d from Tanium.

So the what does this all add up to? What’s going on with A²? What have they learned about managing Windows 10 with MDM, and how are customers responding to it? Just how aggressively are they going after Microsoft and SCCM? These are the things I’m hoping we find out.

Migrating to a new version of Windows is a long process, and embracing a new management model makes it even more complicated, so I’m certainly not saying these things are overdue or missing in action, but it will be great to get an update and more insight into their strategy.

AirWatch at VMworld

AirWatch is a key component of Workspace One and VMware’s Windows 10 strategy, and there was a lot more talk about AirWatch at VMworld in 2015 than in 2014, but AirWatch still has its own event in October. This lets the hard core mobile people dive into things like the latest EMM APIs, mobile security, and building enterprise apps, without getting lost in all the data center and cloud activity at VMworld. I’ll be reporting from AirWatch Connect on October 4 and 5.

BrianMadden.com at VMworld

Gabe and I will be at VMworld to do our usual assortment of live blogs, podcasts, and booth visits; and TechTarget is putting on the Best of VMworld Awards as in the past. So stay tuned for all our news and analysis, and if you’re attending in person, come say hello!

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We'll be sharing lots of info and updates on most of these topics during the VMworld EUC Spotlight Session on 8/31. Registration is required: http://bit.ly/2b6Nuf5
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