Tuesday, May 24, 2022

VMware Workspace ONE Review

Any company with remote workers needs to work harder to protect their assets and extend security to their remote workforce. Virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) solutions continue to rise in popularity as cyberattacks constantly expose weaknesses in older remote access technology, such as virtual public network (VPN) and remote desktop protocol (RDP).

VMware, building upon its pioneering virtualization technology, delivers a suite of desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) and VDI solutions under the brand name VMware Workspace ONE. These solutions provide users with secure remote connections to a corporate desktop populated with the organization’s data and applications.

See below to learn all about where VMware Workspace ONE stands in the VDI market:

VMware Workspace ONE and the VDI market

The VDI market historically struggled to grow beyond a niche solution, and experts projected a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of merely 11.4% with market revenues reaching $13.45 billion by 2022. However, as the COVID-19 mandates drove the workforce to operate from home, cyberattacks against RDP grew 768% in 2020, and VPN became exposed as insecure and inefficient.

Organizations of all sizes sought more secure access options and turned to the VDI market. Researchers now project a CAGR between 18.2% and 19.4% and for the market to grow as large as $33.42 billion by 2028.

VMware, which does not disclose its revenue for the VDI category, developed early virtual computing technology and coined the VDI term in 2004. Other competitors in this market include Amazon Web Services, Cisco Systems, Citrix, Evolve IP, IBM, IGEL Technology, Microsoft, NetApp, Nutanix, Oracle, Paperspace, Parallels, and SolarWinds.

VMware Workspace ONE features

When adopting Workspace ONE, organizations can obtain the following key features:

  • Advanced desktop management
  • App analytics
  • Flexible deployment options, including on-premises, cloud, or hybrid
  • Flexible endpoint options, such as BYOD, corporate devices, desktops, mobile OS, etc.
  • Micro-segmentation using WMware NSX
  • Mobile device management (MDM)
  • Reporting and automation
  • Risk analytics
  • Secure access to apps and resources from the cloud or on-premises.
  • Telecommunications management tools
  • Virtual applications
  • Visibility across the entire environment

Benefits

For those organizations seeking alternatives to VPN and RDP, switching to VMware Workspace ONE provides the following benefits:

Reduced IT management 

Worskspace ONE enables the IT department to assign apps to a class of users and set rules for various types of devices. These rules populate the Workspace ONE Intelligent Hub application that can be installed on users’ devices.

Once the rules are established, the IT department does not need to commit resources to enroll users, assign apps, or configure endpoints because the users can perform the actions on their own within the rules established by IT. Workspace ONE also performs differentiated deployment based on the user’s device and knows to send Windows 10 apps to Windows 10 devices and mobile apps to mobile devices.

Secure remote access

Once the user signs into the VDI, Workspace ONE eliminates the need for further authentication for other available apps by incorporating single sign-on (SSO) technology. Users are relieved of the burden of tracking multiple sets of passwords, and IT security no longer needs to worry so much about stolen credentials.

Workspace ONE can encrypt traffic on an application-by-application basis through the Unified Access Gateway that protects data en route to different locations (data centers, software as a service, cloud). The solution can also deploy conventional security options, such as certificates or VPN, or be used to satisfy modern and advanced zero-trust requirements.

Use cases

Adobe

The global document software provider Adobe needed a secure deployment of corporate resources for 22,000 employees worldwide without heavy constraints on devices or OS. Previously, they had used different solutions for different endpoints (macOS, PC, mobile, etc.), which placed a burden on IT and security teams.

“It’s all about simplification,” says John Mockett, director of employee technology and support at Adobe. “We wanted to take our point tools and provide a consistent experience for both IT and users across all devices.”

Even as the IT team simplified their processes, they tightened security with zero-trust features and accelerated onboarding using Workspace ONE options.

Malala Fund

The Malala Fund charity seeks to ensure every girl has access to 12 years of education in countries such as Afghanistan, Brazil, Ethiopia, and Lebanon. The small, globally-dispersed 65-person team advocates for revised government policy but does not have the time or the background for technology challenges or data security.

“With a remote team, the app catalog makes all the difference,” said Lisa Biancalana, operations manager at Malala Fund. “The team can see all the applications available to them without having to ask for support.”

Amanda Cosby, chief operating officer further elaborated, “devices can be wiped remotely if they’re lost or stolen, which gives me peace of mind that sensitive data — and our people — are safe.”

Peel Regional Police

One of the largest law enforcement organizations in Canada, the Peel Regional Police (PRP) serves 1.4 million people living west of Toronto. The pandemic forced the PRP to seek a zero-touch solution to deploy within 60 days under Canadian contact restrictions.

The solution needed to to equip 2,000 officers and 900 civilian employees with digital tools deployable to iPhones without heavy user support. The solution also needed to support peripherals, such as body-worn cameras, necessary for community and officer safety.

Using VMware’s solution reduced the strain on the PRP IT team and accomplished the task.

“We can manage and secure whatever device we need,” said Marco Novielli, supervisor of systems and information security at Peel Regional Police. “(Workspace ONE) also enables a seamless experience for the user, for as many applications as is necessary, with a single sign-on.”

Differentiators

When selecting Workspace ONE as a VDI solution, organizations do so based on VMware’s key differentiating features such as:

Conditional access

A user can login to Workspace ONE on any device and at any time, but the company can restrict access to data and apps conditionally. Workspace ONE can check locations, jail-break status, session time, and other hardware and user conditions to ensure key data remains protected.

Embedded data loss protection

Workspace ONE Unified Endpoint Management (UEM) acts as an embedded data loss protection (DLP) and provides IT security with the ability to allow or deny:

  • App data encryption
  • Apps to receive data from other apps
  • Backups
  • Data transfer between apps
  • Display of web content into a managed browser
  • Save-as for files

Unified endpoint management

Workspace ONE’s UEM solution manages a wide variety of devices including Windows 10, macOS, iOS, Android, ChromeOS, and some IoT devices. UEM can enforce policies for patching and security and also verifies the user’s status and access levels.

Zero-trust deployment

Workspace ONE integrates with VMware’s Carbon Black endpoint protection and Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) solutions to tightly control access on a user-by-user, device-by-device, and application-by-application basis. Workspace ONE knows if a user is using a BYOD or a corporate-owned device and can check the status of patches, security levels, and other situational circumstances to determine how much access may be permitted.

User reviews

Review site Rating
Gartner Peer Insights 4.3 out of 5
TrustRadius 6.2 out of 10
Capterra 4.7 out of 5
PeerSpot 4.1 out of 5

Pricing

VMware offers seven different Workspace One options, offered either as per device or per user licensing. Based on a 12-month prepaid license fee, VMWare charges:

Per Month License Employee Essentials Mobile Essentials Desktop Essentials UEM Essentials Standard Suite Advanced Suite Enterprise Suite
Per Device $1.66 $3.00 $4.00 $5.25 $3.78 $6.00 $10.00
Per User $3.00 $5.40 $7.20 $9.45 $6.52 $10.90 $15.00

Conclusions

VMware’s focus on device compatibility, device management, and security creates a strong VDI solution worthy of consideration for any company looking to upgrade from VPN or RDP solutions. Corporate managers will be comforted by VMware’s strong brand reputation and long history in the VDI marketplace, while the IT and security teams will be pleased by the large number of options.

The Workspace ONE solution incorporates a wide variety of on-premises, cloud, and SaaS sources and delivers them through an intelligent, encrypted connection that can provide contextual access and security. When it is time to secure remote workers more effectively, companies should make VMware Workspace ONE a candidate for evaluation.

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