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‘Mobile Virtualization’ Will Hit Mainstream Market in 2013, Forrester Research Predicts

“Mobile virtualization” will play a bigger role in mobile device management [MDM] in 2013 as organizations look for more efficient ways to control applications being used by the corporate workforce, a new report by Forrester Research predicts.

“Mobile virtualization” will play a bigger role in mobile device management [MDM] in 2013 as organizations look for more efficient ways to control applications being used by the corporate workforce, a new report by Forrester Research predicts.

With enterprises looking to keep business and personal data on mobile devices separate, technologies like mobile VDI [virtual desktop infrastructure], containers and app wrapping have come into vogue, Forrester analyst Chenxi Wang notes in a report entitled ” 2013 Forrester Mobile Security Predictions.” However, these technologies “diminish the user experience,” she states in the report, which will ultimately lead to on-demand mobile virtualization technologies overtaking traditional MDM in the market.  

“In 2013, mobile virtualization will enter the mainstream IT market. In 2012, we started to see glimpses of technologies that could eventually lead to seamless ‘mobile virtualization,’ wherein policy-based control over corporate apps (and consequently content and data) is enforced on-demand and with little interference to user experience,” according to the report.

Some examples include VMware’s device virtualization technology as well as offerings from companies such as Enterproid and MobileSpaces, according to the report. Though these technologies are still in the early stages and have only limited controls, the possibility of dynamically inserting policies in flight without changing the app “could truly change how enterprises approach mobility.”

“I think more and more information workers would want the convenience of both work and personal content/applications on the same device, but companies still want to retain control, so this should prompt the adoption of more device and app virtualization technologies,” she told SecurityWeek. “I am really I was fairly excited when I saw what Mobile Spaces and Enterproid were able to do — as close to virtualization on demand as we get these days.”

Critical to making mobile virtualization work are whole-app workflows and mashups that are easy to control, the analyst wrote. Extending policy controls to an entire workflow of apps allows for any application to be treated with the same policy as opposed to wrapping and containing a standalone app.

“Ultimately, technology innovations in this area may render BYOD a nonissue,” according to the report. “Although this trend will not culminate in 2013, we will begin to feel its effect within the next 12 months.”

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