Friday Notebook, November 22: Google acquires CloudSimple; opinions on Stadia (VDI for gaming) mixed

Also: Citrix Cloud services; Google Chrome experimental flag crash; Awingu 4.3; 1Password funding; and more.

This is our weekly log of desktop virtualization, enterprise mobility, and end user computing news.

This article was updated on Friday, November 22, at 10:00 AM Pacific Time, to include additional information on the security leadership at Citrix.

Our blog posts

Jack: What if Apple brought Privacy Preferences Policy Control payloads (aka TCC profiles) to iOS? Imagine having MDM control over privacy permissions in enterprise-owned devices, enabling a smoother rollout for kiosk, point of sale, shared, and other non-personalized device scenarios.

Kyle: Google Chrome experiment crashes in RDS. What can we learn? Environments using Google Chrome experienced some panic last week as tabs went blank. 

Jo: Citrix Cloud services: Ready for prime time? With Citrix Cloud services accounting for nearly 20% of new licenses sold by Citrix, the service is becoming mainstream, but not everyone has hit the OK button.

Jack: Jamf Nation User Conference 2019: My final notes and wrap up. A closer look at Jamf Cloud, Jamf Connect updates, and overall strategy.

Bas: Awingu 4.3 is coming with some major updates to SSO and more. Expect to see certificate-based single sign-on, a new Display Manager, and multiple enhancements on the administrator side.

Industry news

Google this week announced the acquisition of CloudSimple. CloudSimple, as you’ll recall, was instrumental in getting VMware on Google Cloud Platform. Now, here’s the interesting thing: CloudSimple also was also one of the partners for Azure VMware Solutions, and Microsoft Ventures was a former investor. Microsoft can’t be too happy. But, note that Dell EMC’s Virtustream is also going to be a partner for Azure VMware Solutions, so I don’t believe Google buying CloudSimple will put any of this in danger.

The U.K. edition of Google Next ‘19 ran in London this week, with a couple of EUC and security-related announcements. Advanced Protection for G Suite and Cloud Identity is GA; they’re making it easier to manage third-party app access; and Smart Compose is coming to Google Docs for G Suite, in beta in English.

Nutanix has named Tarken Maner as their new chief commercial officer. Desktop virtualization folks know Tarkan as the longtime CEO of Wyse Technology.

Citrix has hired a new CISO, Fermín J. Serna. Fermín comes from Semmle, which was recently acquired by GitHub, and had a long stint at Google in security engineering. What about Stan Black? He’s the Chief Security and Information Officer (CSIO), according to his LinkedIn. (UPDATE, Friday, November 22, 10:00 AM PT): I reached out to Citrix for clarification, and it turns out that Stan left Citrix in July. A spokesperson for Citrix told me that Citrix "split our Global Technology and Security organization, which had included both IT and corporate security, to drive improved focus. Fermin will lead the security function and oversee all of our security related activities, including product security, cloud security and IT security, to ensure that we are taking a more centralized and holistic approach. He will report directly to Jeroen van Rotterdam, our EVP of Engineering."

HP this week announced Z Central, a package comprising racked HP workstations; ZCentral Remote Boost (a new version of HP Remote Graphics Software), and ZCentral Connect (a new broker).

The VMware App Volumes 4.0 beta is available today. It sounds like it’s a lot better. 

1Password took funding for the first time ever, with part of the goal being to grow in the enterprise, and there were a lot of different opinions about the move. I don’t think we’ll ever be able to get away from passwords in our consumer lives, and as a user, I’ve always loved 1Password. While enterprises should be moving towards federation standards as fast as possible, there’s still a role for password vaulting for legacy apps. 1Password can apparently integrate with Active Directory and Okta; we’ll make a note to get a closer look at how this works.

Outlook for iOS and Android is getting a new Intune App Protection Policy: Blocking sensitive data in notifications.

Duo (now part of Cisco) has received FedRAMP authorization.

Other reads, news, and notes

From Kyle: Google Stadia officially launched on Tuesday and opinion was mixed, to say the least. The good news is that it does seem to work, largely as advertised—provided you have a good internet connection and Wi-Fi (no LTE access right now). It was always a tall order to get people to pay for Google Stadia, a monthly subscription, and then full price for games that have been on the market for a year or more. Many call the launch closer to a beta as many promised features won’t arrive until early next year and the 4K video isn’t truly that, just upscaled 1080p (at least for Destiny 2). No technology launch is perfect and Stadia at least works for those who received their Founders kit on the release date.

Apple plans to make iOS 14 less buggy. (Via Bloomberg.)

The Apple App Store kicked out vaping-related apps. My first thought was that this will just push more users to look into side-loading apps, which is actually pretty easy. This is the same effect we saw with Fortnite.

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