A few years ago there was a theory put forward by a certain Apple CEO that we were entering the Post PC Eraâ€¦while I have never subscribed to that theory (which was affirmed by VMware CTO Steve Herrod at VMworld 2012) it’s obvious to see that the revolution is more based around the ways in which workers access their desktops, data and LOB applications. I think the fact that we have been inundated with iPhones, iPads, Galaxy Tablets and a like has had something to do with the misunderstanding of the Post PC Era.
The facts are that the PC will never disappear (for the foreseeable future anyways), and when I say PCâ€¦I don’t mean Windows, I also mean Apple and Linux desktopsâ€¦as much as the fanboys would tell you otherwise, these are PC’s. So let’s try to think about the Post PC Era as the End User Computing Revolution. This much better reflects what I believe is happening at the moment.
At VMworld we saw demos of Horizon Application Manager with AppBlast, Data (formally Octopus) and the SSO experience for bringing external applications (be it SaaS or Hosted) all accessible and available via the one browser window. What this represents is the power of the browser and what can be achieved by getting the correct framework in place to deliver everything that was previously done on the desktop or externally via a provider through a private or hosted instance of Horizon.
We are about to enter a world where SaaS is only part of the equation. Five or so years ago, many people where seeing SaaS as the ultimate solution for most SME/B’s whereby every key service and application is delivered by external providers. The power of virtualization has rebalanced the scales by way of allowing companies to look at deploying extremely scalable and cost effective private cloud solutions. The vCloud stack is as feature rich as it is malleable. There is no reason for all future installs of ESX and vCenter to include the vCloud management and automation layerâ€¦when you add the additional layer of DynamicOps, you start to have the building blocks for a client infrastructure that can seamlessly move workloads between private and partner hosted environments (and public if they so wish).
So what will impact this uptake of this shift? It’s really quiet easy to work outâ€¦end user acceptanceâ€¦Will a key decision maker at a company looking at their options fully comprehend what this shift entails? Will they understand the fundamental shift that translates an employee’s workspace from a decentralised mess of files, applications and external services to a logically presented single sign on experience? Will they understand the concept of the Self Service Experience when it comes to new or additional applications?
Really, what it comes down to in order to ease decision makers and end users into this new EUC world is ensuring that integrators and service providers fully understand the technology themselvesâ€¦that is, there needs to be a process whereby this technology and the concepts are properly delivered via a productization process.
Learn -> Productize -> Promote -> Sell -> Deliver
Internally, to deliver the EUC experience we are just undertaking the Learning stage, but it’s also my job as a technology evangelist to Promote and Sell the concepts. While I hate the term, there will come a time where we need to “Dogfood” the technology. By getting sales people, tech teams and select management onto an internal beta/UAT of a platform like Horizon is key to ensuring that the Promote, Sell and Deliver part of the equation can go smoothly.
When I close my eyes and think about how our SBM clients should be working in 12-18 months time I can picture a single user experience with the browser being central to deliver files, apps and the desktop. For me…there is no better platform than Horizon, and VMware will work hard to ensure partners/service providers will be positioned to deliver on the promise of the real revolution!