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Citrix Releases Its Workspace Cloud Platform

In what could be the most new product offering from Citrix in years, the company today said its new cloud-based offering for deploying and managing virtual and mobile devices is now available. The company unveiled the Citrix Workspace Cloud back in May, hailing it as architecture for the modern digital workplace.

With its control-plane architecture, the company designed the Citrix Workspace Cloud to give IT administrators or third party managed service providers the ability to securely deliver virtual desktops or applications to users using any public or hybrid cloud offering. The architecture behind the Citrix Workspace Cloud is the Lifecycle Manager, which was built using the engine from ShareFile, the document sharing platform it acquired back in 2011.

The Lifecycle Manager creates blueprints that ease the migration of earlier versions of XenApp to current releases and provides the ability for IT to deploy them in the new management platform. These blueprints "are effectively groupings of things that you need to do to define whatever workload it is you want to deliver," as Citrix VP and CTO Christian Reilly explained back at Synergy.

Citrix said its Lifecycle Management packages let IT pros design, edit and deploy application and desktop blueprints, and once-distributed administrators can manage and monitor the deployed images or apps. The company is offering an entry-level version free of charge to existing customers with maintenance agreements. Citrix is offering various other Lifecycle Management configurations starting at $2.50 per month per user.

Among the deployments it will manage are the Workspace Cloud Virtual Apps and Desktops, which Citrix said will let IT shops securely deliver Windows and Linux apps, browsers and desktop images to any type of device. Priced at $35 per month, it lets IT pros build, design, edit and roll out app and desktop images. It also includes file, share and synchronization functions. Another option for $40 a month is the Integrated Apps and Data Suite, which adds on top of the Virtual Apps and Desktop Services mobile device and app management, as well as productivity tools.

"With Citrix Workspace Cloud, we are opening up virtualization and VDI to a whole new range of customers, for whom it was too complex or too expensive for in the past," said Jesse Lipson, vice president and general manager, Citrix Workflow and Workspace Cloud, in a statement. The move to expand its customer base comes as the company is under pressure by activist investor Elliott Management, which holds 7.5 percent of Citrix's common stock, to grow the company.

Uptake for the Citrix Workspace Cloud by managed service providers and IT organizations is poised to be a critical measure of whether the company can achieve further growth.

Posted by Jeffrey Schwartz on 08/20/2015 at 1:29 PM


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