Citrix previews “Dazzle,” an iTunes-like interface for user self-service application access

One of Citrix's announcement from last week's Synergy conference was a new end-user product called "Dazzle," which can only be described as "iTunes for your apps."

One of Citrix’s announcement from last week’s Synergy conference was a new end-user product called “Dazzle,” which can only be described as “iTunes for your apps.”

Dazzle is an application for end users which shows them icons for all the various applications they have access to, and from there users can add individual apps to their own Start Menus or desktops (or they can just launch the apps directly from Dazzle). It can even hook into streamed apps by showing users different options for whether the app is available offline. (And we can assume that Citrix will integrate this into the XenClient hypervisor to allow seamless offline streamed Windows apps from the Mac version of Dazzle running on a Mac OS X client.)

In many ways, Dazzle is just a newer, sexier version of the PN Agent client that’s been around for almost ten years. When most people see Dazzle for the first time, they immediately accuse Citrix of ripping off Apple iTunes. But that’s only half right. Citrix also ripped off HP, since Citrix claims that Dazzle is “putting the ‘personal’ back into computing,” which is not unlike HP’s “the computer is personal again.”

Seriously, this thing is so much like iTunes, there’s even “playlists” for your applications. (I am absolutely not making that up.) About the only thing from iTunes that’s not in Dazzle is the “Cover Flow” album art flipping interface, although in its place Citrix created a “Starfield View.” (So I guess they were influenced by Apple’s Time Machine too.)

From a technical standpoint, Dazzle is a fancy front-end to an existing Citrix Receiver on a Windows or Mac client. As such, it can connect to multiple back-end XenApp or XenDesktop farms, and it can totally integrate with Citrix Workflow Studio, allowing users to self-provision IT services and new apps in addition to launching existing apps.

Now here’s the crazy thing about Dazzle: I really like it! Yes, I understand that it’s nothing more than stupid eye candy, but I like that Citrix is offering this to users. I like that the “Dazzle” logo is a cool Web 2.0-looking thing. And I like that users will understand how to use it.

Dazzle should be available for both Windows and Mac by the end of the year.

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Funny I thought the logo was the worst part of this upgrade/new product.  It looks cheesy, and playful and unprofessional.  It reminds me of the Windows XP Fisher Price look.  What year is it....2001?


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Beyond Apps hosted on XenApp and Desktops from XenDesktop Dazzle can also allow IT to publish internal Web Apps or Cloud based SaaS Apps fom multiple providers. These apps can run in the local browser if desired by IT.


This makes Dazzle the one stop destination for employees that IT contols for all apps ( not just Citrix apps ). Add to that self help support content and online GoToAssist and users should benefit beyond just the cool UI.


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Hopefully we can brand Dazzle to make it sound more corporate in our case....


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Well remember that Dazzle is a consumer-ish front end for the Citrix Receiver.. so if you don't like Dazzle, you don't have to use it. You can just use the Receiver.


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There is 2 things that make it more than a sexy Web Interface... one I saw and 1 I imagine in a near futur...


- the ability to get a workflow for approval when you request to self-serve an application


- the ability for the user to "upload" and propose to their entreprise community "application" he found usefull... For application, you can think of simple URL (launch with local/streamed/published browser) or even isolated application as I heard that Citrix were working on something to let user install application on their desktop not the traditional way (install application, get it isolated and streamed back to whatever desktop you log on)...


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I forget something : the pplaylist !!! have the ability to organize the application the way I want (in the folder I want) on my PC... this is very important as sometimes the logical conception of IT didn't match the usage made by users...


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I think of yesturday desqview.... better name then dazzle even


toastytech.com/.../dvxmswin.gif


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I really like the idea and if they need to steal shamelessly from Apple. Good on them.


The easier and more familiar the better.


Ever read a user guide for iTunes or the iTunes store?


Didn't think so.


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