Home > Active Directory (AD), All, Azure, BYOD, Citrix, Client Services, Cloud, Intune, Microsoft, Mobility, Office 365, ShareFile, SharePoint Server 2013 > #Microsoft – On the right track! – #Windows, #BYOD, #Citrix

#Microsoft – On the right track! – #Windows, #BYOD, #Citrix

I don’t know if you all agree but I find that Microsoft is making some really good strategic decisions to align themselves and be ready for the “next generation” workplace and client services. Everyone has been talking about BYOx and that everyone will bring their own device and consume business services and functions on that device in parallel to doing personal stuff.

But has BYOD taken off yet?

I personally think that it hasn’t to the extent that many thought it would, there are some companies in some countries that have adopted it for some use cases and user categories, but the majority is still struggling with it though their business apps and functions aren’t really there to support this way of working yet.

Even if they have a NetScaler or similar remote access capabilities with some sort of Desktop and App virtualization (like Citrix XenDesktop) to run the apps it’s still not enough. How do you solve the offline working scenario? And isn’t hosted apps and desktops just a legacy workaround until those business processes have been SaaS’ified? And what about “dropbox” alternatives, H: drives and G: drives, Sharepoint data etc. There is still a user data mess (read my earlier post on this) that needs to be solved and especially a “mega aggregator” tool for getting data/content and synch across devices in a secure manner (data also encrypted at rest on ALL devices and not just mobiles)…

Microsoft is kind of stepping up here I must say from a strategy point of view that makes me believe in them, even though I’ve said that no one ever will take my MacBook Air from me! Have a look at the features that are coming with Windows 8.1 to support a more “semi-controlled” or “semi-trusted” device, and the new cloud services like Azure AD, Windows Intunes offerings in combination with the online messaging and collaboration Office 365 services. And they are apparently also working on a “legacy” cloud service to offer desktops as a service (DaaS) as I wrote in a previous blog post as well.

I think that Microsoft is moving in the right direction towards offering the next generation enterprise IT services and to support the new way of working, and fast!

Have a look at these posts/articles on the news in Windows 8.1:

Everything you need, right from (the) Start

Microsoft is focused on delivering one experience across all the devices in your life. The centerpiece of that strategy and experience are the Microsoft services and apps that come right from (the) Start on your new Windows device.

This is the first blog post in a series that will highlight the apps and services driving toward this “one experience” vision. This experience comes to life through more than 20 new and improved Microsoft apps and services that come as part of Windows 8.1, including a new one that we are announcing today – Skype, right from (the) Start!

Apps_Graphic_White_REV

It’s where you want to go today….

Staying connected, expressing yourself, getting stuff done, having serious fun: these are some of the most important things we all do, every day, and we believe your Windows device should reflect that right from the first moment you power it on.

Today’s new Windows experience really is quite an evolution. From the operating systems of yesteryear, asking “Where do you want to go today?,” Windows 8 and the soon to be released Windows 8.1, are the start of a fresh perspective, delivering a complete experience that focuses on the things people value most.

We have been building an expanding base of consumer apps and services. Bing, Skype, Internet Explorer, SkyDrive, Outlook.com, Xbox Music, Video, and Games are just a few of the experiences that are now part of your new Windows device. Each service itself is compelling, and the magic really happens when they smoothly flow together to create one experience.

SkyDrive is a great example of our new approach. As many have had a chance to take an early look at the 8.1 preview they are really struck by the “secret sauce” behind SkyDrive’s integration into Windows –….. continue reading here!

What’s New in Windows 8.1

We built Windows 8 to bring a modern computing experience to businesses and to help professionals stay connected to their colleagues and clients from anywhere, anytime. Windows 8.1 advances this vision and introduces new manageability, mobility, security, user experience and networking capabilities that will be available later this year – with the goal of offering customers the best business tablets and versatile modern business PCs driven by the most powerful operating system designed for today’s modern businesses.

Below is a list of some of the new and updated features that we invite to you test out when the Windows 8.1 experience becomes available later this month.

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Enhancements

Workplace Join

A Windows 8 PC was either domain joined or not.  If it was a member of the domain, the user could access corporate resources (if permissioned) and IT could control the PC through group policy and other mechanisms.  This feature allows a middle ground between all or nothing access, allowing a user to work on the device of their choice and still have access to corporate resources With Workplace Join, IT administrators now have the ability to offer finer-grained control to corporate resources.  If a user registers their device, IT can grant some access while still enforcing some governance parameters on the device.

Work Folders

Work Folders allows a user to sync data to their device from their user folder located in the corporation’s data center. Files created locally will sync back to the file server in the corporate environment. This syncing is natively integrated into the file system.  Note, this all happens outside the firewall client sync support. Previously, Windows 8 devices needed to be domain joined (or required domain credentials) for access to file shares.  Syncing could be done with third-party folder replication apps. With Work Folders, Users can keep local copies of their work files on their devices, with automatic synchronization to your data center, and for access from other devices. IT can enforce Dynamic Access Control policies on the Work Folder Sync Share (including automated Rights Management) and require Workplace Join to be in place.

Open MDM

While many organizations have investments with System Center and will continue to leverage these investments we also know that many organizations want to manage certain classes of devices, like tablets and BYOD devices, as mobile devices. With Windows 8.1….. continue reading here!

//Richard

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