Yesterday, the curtain fell on the seventh annual Citrix Synergy partner and customer conference. As attendees geared up for the closing party in the evening and vendors started to pack up their wares, BizTech sat down with Citrix Vice President of Corporate Product Marketing Matthew Morgan to glean his thoughts on the conference and the road ahead for the company.
The conversation touched on a number of topics, starting with retiring CEO Mark Templeton, who gave the opening keynote for the conference, before moving on to how Morgan views Citrix’s place in the overall mobile and virtualization community and what its two new products, Workspace Suite and Workspace Services, say about the company’s future.
BIZTECH: Tell us about your CEO, Mark Templeton, and the news that he will be retiring this year.
MORGAN: There is only one Mark Templeton. I don’t have any insight to share with you on his plans, except for what has already been stated. I will tell you that Mark has been an inspiration and a guiding light to so many of us at Citrix, and for the industry. He is incredibly revered. He has promised his involvement will continue.
He is also wicked smart. Mark’s ability to master the most complex technical topics is amazing — it’s fantastic. Mark enters meetings and it is a pleasure. Even tough conversations are pleasant with him.
BIZTECH: What are your thoughts on this year’s conference?
MORGAN: This was a huge show for Citrix. We declared our focus earlier in the year on a new category of solutions called Mobile Workspaces. This is not a small change. This is a pretty significant declaration of focus for us. We are seeing the culmination of this business mobility movement coming together around ensuring that people have the kind of productivity assets they need to be successful long-term, and our view is that there is technological innovation to provide for separating the work environment from the physical device.
BIZTECH: Templeton’s keynote was about how mobility isn’t just about the device and apps, it's about the person. Does changing the way you look at mobility to reflect this make it more likely that you deliver the services and tools people need?
MORGAN: Exactly. Also, it is bigger than your traditional virtualization conversation. We are talking about data, we are talking about collaboration, we are talking about the ability to manage mobile applications in a secure way. Interfacing with personal environments. All of that is a much bigger conversation, and Citrix is in a unique position to address those concerns.
We have the world’s best networking technology with NetScaler. The integration of security across the product line gives you the ability to have that mobile workspace where the user experiences secure access that is fast, instant and transparent. We can provide the world’s best experience when using applications, even if it is a virtualized Windows app, because of our HDX [high-definition experience] technology.
ShareFile is a unique product in the industry: an enterprise-focused solution that provides file sync and share across all virtual environments and across all devices, and deep integration with personal clouds.
All of this technology is really coming together under this concept, this category we call Mobile Workspaces.
BIZTECH: There were at least eight product releases this week. How does the company feel about its new offerings?
MORGAN: Sudhakar [Citrix Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Enterprise and Service Provider Division Sudhakar Ramakrishna] is an amazing leader for the research and development of products. He has a roadmap that is exciting, and we are delivering on that roadmap. His team is hitting on all cylinders.
If you look at the products we announced, they all come together under the new Workspace Suite. No one has done that. Everyone says, “We are gong to solve a point problem in mobility,” then they make a big deal of the point problem.
No one has said, “Hey, it is about security, it is about access to your apps, it is about the ability to file sync and share, but not as separate point solutions that don’t talk to each other.”
It is about bringing them together in a single product. That’s what Workspace Suite is all about. It is a single product that runs on any of these devices. It gives IT a true answer to how they are going to provide business mobility. They now have a strategy. It is cool because it is everything you typically see people spend money on, but in a collective way that all functions together.
So they can come in and say, “Look, we are going to make a workspace that follows the individual, centers around the user.” Gives them the power to get to anything they need without security concerns, because it is all built in.
BIZTECH: Can you tell us more about Workspace Services, another major new product announced at the show, and how it differs from Workspace Suite?
MORGAN: Workspace Suite is designed to be a product that IT organizations can internalize. They can use what they want where they want it. So if they have an on-premises infrastructure or data center, they can build out their own solution and provide that via the product, via Workspace Suite. And users can use that data center as the infrastructure.
If they have their own hybrid world, where they are trying to use a shared infrastructure, they can put themselves in a situation where they have control. It is your classic perpetual term software license type of arrangement.
Now Workspace Services is different. It is a hosted solution delivered through the cloud. We previewed it, but we don’t have any packaging in place yet.
The point is that, whether you’re on-premises with your strategy or you need something on demand, Citrix has both. So not only do we have more components than anyone else, we are also offering the most flexible consumption models possible.