Since apparently it’s Dell/EMC week here at BrianMadden.com, let’s take a look at this deal from one more angle: mobility.
You may not be aware, but Dell has a range of mobility products which were brought together with the release of the Dell EMM suite in early 2014:
- Dell Workspace apps for iOS and Android, including email, PIM, browsing, and Vonage VoIP integration.
- Cloud-based MDM for iOS and Android, based on Wyse Cloud Client Manager. (Wyse CCM also includes thin client management.)
- Type-2 client hypervisor white labeled from Moka5. (With Moka5 out of business I’m not sure what the status of that is now.)
- Traditional PC management from KACE.
Dell EMM lacks more advanced MAM capabilities, but I said at the time that that was okay. This still holds true today—iOS MDM does a lot by itself (including MAM), and not all EMM vendors need to get into SDKs and app wrapping on their own (it’s a messy space). The main issue to possibly be concerned about is lack of support for Android for Work.
Clearly Dell isn’t a top tier EMM vendor, but it’s early to be saying exactly what will happen with Dell EMM once they own AirWatch. (Or rather once they own 27% of AirWatch.) There are still things in there that Dell needs to hold on to, like management for Wyse thin clients.
However, Dell could start selling AirWatch to customers that have more advanced EMM needs, giving both companies more opportunities. And since AirWatch has always been interested in managing all types of endpoints, they might be interested in Dell’s thin client or traditional PC management software. (Though that's definitely not the direction they're generally headed in when it comes to laptops.)
More important, VMware has huge ambitions for managing Windows 10 using AirWatch MDM—a tight connection with Dell could be a big opportunity to promote this.