Hewlett-Packard just rolled out something new for small- and medium-size businesses (SMBs) concerned about how to secure
and manage their infrastructures in the face of a growing mobile
workforce. The new solutions are part of the HP Converged Infrastructure.
HP positions its product in light of mobile workforce statistics. With more than 1.1 billion mobile appliances in use worldwide, for example, IDC reports that organizations of all sizes are challenged by the need to access, manage and secure mobile devices and the data generated by them.
According to Gartner research, by 2016, at least 50 percent of business e-mail users will rely primarily on a tablet or mobile client instead of a traditional desktop. The trend to use devices to access e-mail and other business data requires SMBs to prepare their infrastructures to support increased mobility, HP warned.
A Cadre of Solutions
In a move to improve security, HP is offering Client Virtualization SMB virtual desktop solution. The solution includes reference architectures -- such as HP ProLiant Generation 8 (Gen8) servers and client virtualization software from Citrix, Microsoft or VMware -- that protects company data by storing user profiles and data on a centralized server.
Meanwhile, HP Client Virtualization, Analysis and Modeling, a prepackaged service that analyzes the existing IT environment to simplify and speed deployment of virtualization for medium-size organizations and help them embrace mobile technology, aims to help SMBs reduce risk and complexity of client virtualization projects.
HP Transformation Experience Workshop for Mobility, a service that aligns business and IT stakeholders to ensure employees have access to data while upholding security requirements, promises to simplify adoption of mobile technology. The list of services goes on and on, from HP Business Protection solutions to increase uptime to HP Unified Communications & Collaboration tools to improve the mobile workforce's productivity to multi-service routers and switches.
HP was not immediately available for comment, so we turned to Zeus Kerravala, principal analyst at ZK Research, to discuss HP's move into the BYOD space. He told us BYOD -- bring your own device -- is one of the hottest trends in the market. But he wonders if HP is offering too little, too late to compete with the players that have already introduced mobile solutions.
"People do look to HP for solutions. They are one of the comprehensive solutions providers out there," Kerravala said. "But I would have thought this was something they could have gotten out in front of a little earlier. Everyone has jumped on this trend already. Considering the portfolio of products HP has, I would have liked to have seen them lead the market, not follow, which is kind of what I feel they are doing here."
When Kerravala looked at the announcement, he said it appeared somewhat like HP was "cobbling together stuff" rather than launching a well thought out, architected solution for the mobile space.
"Obviously it's better if you have a solution than not have one," he said. "I thought this was a little me-too. But obviously the SMB market is very broad and very diverse, and considering the opportunities in the enterprise space, this is a good place for HP to start."