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Virtualization Goes Mobile

The core value of this kind of product is around the innovation as much as the application

Recently VMware announced the Mobile Virtualization Platform (MVP) aimed at handset vendors to enable mobile users to choose between two different platforms or phone numbers on a single handset. This technology, which I call "virtualization light," would enable users who had separate phones for work and for home to be able to use both phones from a single device.

For example, say that you have both a personal and a business cell phone; this software would enable you to combine the two into a single mobile platform, supporting two separate operating systems, phone numbers, and data communications. Thus, users would be able to bring any device into the workplace and the IT team could use that device to include any particular workplace policies. It could even be the case that one device could have multiple operating systems running so that you see Symbian and Android in a single view, according to VMware.

This technology was created around the acquisition of Trango Software. So, MVP can be considered to be the best of Trango and VMware, combined into a small package.

This offering could mean that VMware is "jumping the shark," considering that the drivers behind virtualization are still around better utilization of hardware, among other things, and smart phones are not exactly expensive these days. However, this is not about money; this is about allowing a single device to serve dual purposes, and not really about sharing. However, this is a good application for virtualization nonetheless.

No matter if the mobile device-carrying public latches on to the benefit of having two operating systems on the same device or not, the core value of this kind of product is around the innovation as much as the application. Clearly, mobile devices are platforms now. Not becoming platforms - they are platforms. As we move into the world of cloud computing using virtualization, they will become another place where business processes reside, and thus the ability to better utilize mobile platforms will have value.

Going forward I suspect that operating systems supporting virtualization will find their way onto all kinds of things that we've not yet thought of, including smart TVs, cars, even the treadmill at the gym. Clearly, there are many instances where devices doing two or more things at once demonstrate value to the user.

Another benefit of this movement to smaller, more consumer-related devices is that the general public, who does not know about virtualization, will have a small yet effective demonstration on their mobile device. Once they figure out the utility, the virtualized devices could be the next iPhone. You have to have one.

More Stories By David Linthicum

David Linthicum is the Chief Cloud Strategy Officer at Deloitte Consulting, and was just named the #1 cloud influencer via a recent major report by Apollo Research. He is a cloud computing thought leader, executive, consultant, author, and speaker. He has been a CTO five times for both public and private companies, and a CEO two times in the last 25 years.

Few individuals are true giants of cloud computing, but David's achievements, reputation, and stellar leadership has earned him a lofty position within the industry. It's not just that he is a top thought leader in the cloud computing universe, but he is often the visionary that the wider media invites to offer its readers, listeners and viewers a peek inside the technology that is reshaping businesses every day.

With more than 13 books on computing, more than 5,000 published articles, more than 500 conference presentations and numerous appearances on radio and TV programs, he has spent the last 20 years leading, showing, and teaching businesses how to use resources more productively and innovate constantly. He has expanded the vision of both startups and established corporations as to what is possible and achievable.

David is a Gigaom research analyst and writes prolifically for InfoWorld as a cloud computing blogger. He also is a contributor to “IEEE Cloud Computing,” Tech Target’s SearchCloud and SearchAWS, as well as is quoted in major business publications including Forbes, Business Week, The Wall Street Journal, and the LA Times. David has appeared on NPR several times as a computing industry commentator, and does a weekly podcast on cloud computing.

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