Essentially, VMware is bringing a technology to virtually partition Android devices into two. One side is remotely controlled and maintained by corporate IT, and the other is free to the end user for this private and personal consumption. How does it work? According to VMware, the two distinct profiles are created and isolated from each other -- one that's a corporate profile, another that's a personal profile. Each part of the OS has a dual identity, using application-level control to manage corporate compliance.
But how does VMware Horizon Mobile achieve this? According to the release:
"VMware Horizon Mobile will provide a simple way for IT departments to securely provision, manage and de-provision a corporate mobile workspace (email, applications, data, etc.). Unlike other mobile solutions that require customized application development, enterprises and public organizations using VMware Horizon Mobile will be able to access and leverage the more than 250,000 applications available on the Android Market."There seems to be some vagueness in the explanation, which leads me to believe VMware hasn't quite gotten all the kinks out. I'm unaware of a native way for Android to essentially have two "user accounts." But VMware and Verizon said they're "working with a growing ecosystem of partners," which sounds a lot like, "We're getting people on board to help with the concept."
One thing is for certain, mobile device management is the hottest thing around these days. If Verizon and VMware are creating a unique, specific solution that could control all Android devices, it certainly has tons of potential in the market.
When will we see such devices arrive? According to Verizon, the technology will be coming to its smartphones "in the coming months," so don't hold your breath. But VARs and partners should take this opportunity to brush up on their MDM solutions if they haven't already started.