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Article

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

Dave Linthicum is Sr. VP at Cloud Technology Partners, and an internationally known cloud computing and SOA expert. He is a sought-after consultant, speaker, and blogger. In his career, Dave has formed or enhanced many of the ideas behind modern distributed computing including EAI, B2B Application Integration, and SOA, approaches and technologies in wide use today. In addition, he is the Editor-in-Chief of SYS-CON's Virtualization Journal.

For the last 10 years, he has focused on the technology and strategies around cloud computing, including working with several cloud computing startups. His industry experience includes tenure as CTO and CEO of several successful software and cloud computing companies, and upper-level management positions in Fortune 500 companies. In addition, he was an associate professor of computer science for eight years, and continues to lecture at major technical colleges and universities, including University of Virginia and Arizona State University. He keynotes at many leading technology conferences, and has several well-read columns and blogs. Linthicum has authored 10 books, including the ground-breaking "Enterprise Application Integration" and "B2B Application Integration." You can reach him at [email protected] Or follow him on Twitter. Or view his profile on LinkedIn.

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