The Enterprise Personal Cloud is coming soon, and it is not what you think it is. The Personal Cloud has largely been marketed as a consumer storage cloud enabling different devices to share files such as music, photos, and video. But the Enterprise Personal Cloud needs to go further, because companies have special application and data sharing needs. The Enterprise Personal Cloud must include client virtualization to create a Cloud-based workspace incorporating data, settings, and access methods. This workspace can then replace the PC workstation as the locus of personal IT presence. This has important implications across hardware and software usage and deployment, in process handling, and for management and security.
We have argued in the past how the emerging Boundary Free Enterprise™ changes everything in the corporate data center. The Enterprise Personal Cloud is likely to become the key agent of that change. As the personal workspace moves to the Cloud, it becomes more accessible, more manageable, and more secure. It can be backed up, mirrored, moved, and easily provisioned with new software, new access settings, new licenses, and current links to current data. It is accessible on all devices, from anywhere, and never goes offline. It enables virtual work, and makes a new ecosystem based on multiple devices and multiple operating systems possible.
At the moment, the Enterprise Personal Cloud is in an early stage of development, characterized by experimentation and lack of clarity of vision. But we can see the basis for the idea in current iterations of virtualization and Cloud suites from Citrix, VMware, and Microsoft, followed by trials of these features by vendors including HP, Dell, and Fujitsu. The virtualization vendors have a head start because they control underlying hypervisor software that provides a key piece of the puzzle. But there are many paths toward the Enterprise Personal Cloud, and this space is likely to be heavily contested.
For hardware vendors, software vendors, users and administrators, the Enterprise Personal Cloud is an extremely important component of next generation IT use and deployment, and it requires immediate attention. Those who can deploy fully functional instances will have an advantage, and will be early leaders in taking advantage of the numerous benefits of this development.
Note: Ongoing Saugatuck subscription clients can access this premium research piece (1172MKT) by clicking here, and inputting your ID and password. Non-clients can purchase and download this premium research piece by clicking here.