There's good news for users of Oracle's virtual desktops: they just became even more portable. The company launched the Oracle Virtual Desktop Client App for Apple iPads. Available for free at Apple's iTunes store, it takes enterprise computing to places it has never gone before.
The new iPad application stands to make enterprise computing more portable than ever. So says Chris Kawalek, writing for Oracle's virtualization blog. He offers of an example of a health care worker with a Sun Ray Client at the nurse's station. “You can login to your Windows (or Solaris or Linux) virtual desktop from that Sun Ray Client and access whatever applications you have access to. You can then grab your iPad, go to a different office, and pick up your desktop right where you left off. Or if you forget your iPad, you can login to your virtual desktop from pretty much any PC in the office.”
Other possible uses of the new application include easing seasonal ramping up woes for contact centers. Many contact centers need to drastically increase their capacity when the holiday shopping season rolls around, “but the setup time for adding new workstations for each agent is very costly,” Kawalak observed. “This year, those folks can be given iPads and then immediately access applications like Oracle's Siebel CRM without even needing a PC or monitor.”
Oracle Virtual Desktop Client for iPads is also a boon to traveling sales representatives who must make regular presentations, thanks to the ubiquity of Wi-Fi. “I was at an Oracle function in the UK a couple of weeks ago where one of our sales consultants gave a presentation running on his Windows virtual desktop in his office in Australia. That's about 10,000 miles away, over a WiFi connection in a hotel. And it worked great.”
The new application benefits users, administrators, and businesses trying to cut costs. Wim Coekaerts, a senior vice president at Oracle, notes that Oracle Virtual Desktop Client App for iPad, when used with Oracle's Sun Ray Software and Oracle Virtual Desktop infrastructure, benefits customers by delivering “enhanced security, centralized administration, lower cost, and better access to their corporate data from iPad.”
Anthony Lye, senior vice president of Oracle CRM, noted potent benefits to using Oracle's Siebel CRM with the new application. “When combined with Oracle Virtual Desktop Client App for iPad, customers can now access Siebel CRM on the go without any modifications. The user's desktop environment, including any web-based Siebel CRM application, is hosted in the data center and rendered accurately over the network on the iPad, increasing speed and ensuring that no local data is stored on the device, which increases security."
Oracle still faces some tough competition in the desktop virtualization market from Citrix and VMware. In the area of cloud computing, some of Oracle's competitors going forward include Hewlett Packard, IBM, Cisco, and Red Hat. But this bold move into the iPad market gives Oracle a definite edge, one that will surely grow as more workers and executives embrace the iPad.