Here's what the refresh of Microsoft's Enterprise Mobility Suite means for existing Office 365 clients or for organizations planning a migration to Microsoft’s cloud services.
This just in: The current product lineup within Microsoft’s Enterprise Mobility Platform keeps expanding and closing more gaps within the portfolio. The inclusion of the Azure RemoteApp functionality along with Cloud App Security and the Microsoft Identity Manager license paints a compelling story within the enterprise. With Advanced Threat Analytics joining the Enterprise Mobility Suite (EMS) bundle several months ago, the offering is no longer just Azure AD Premium, Intune and Azure RMS.
What does this mean for existingclients or for organizations planning a migration to Microsoft’s cloud service? Options!
The inclusion of Azure RemoteApp within the Enterprise Mobility story is particularly interesting to me for several reasons. This feature, which was released in late 2014, allows you to remotely deliver applications that would normally be installed on user desktops or servers (think Microsoft Office, Visio, PowerShell) on-premises and stream them over remote desktop services within Azure. This means that you can remotely deliver applications that typically were part of new PC images to a wide variety of non-Windows devices. This technology is not new; vendors such as Citrix have been providing similar services, but they never had the tight integration Microsoft has.
Simply put, the Azure RemoteApp offering allows the IT administrator to provide end users with the enterprise applications that are needed to conduct business with whatever device is all the rage at the moment (such as the Surface Book or MacBook). An Azure RemoteApp end user would need to install the Remote Desktop client on all his or her devices (iPad, Samsung tablet, MacBook, etc.) and log in with Azure AD credentials to launch the published applications. The BYOD movement is alive and well!
If you are currently a Microsoft Enterprise Mobility customer or looking to add the EMS bundle, you should seriously consider layering the Azure RemoteApp services on top of any EMS licenses. After all, extending a slice of the enterprise desktop securely to employees who are working anywhere, anytime, with any device requires a unique security posture that the traditional IT shop is probably not equipped to successfully address.
Another reason why Azure RemoteApp is an interesting player within the Enterprise Mobility story is that clients no longer have to worry about scaling up infrastructure to meet consumption demands. Think about the ebb and flow of your internal business. Do specific applications see heavy loads only during specific times of the month? Think about the fine folks in the finance department and billing. Since the service is based in Azure, the ability to automatically scale to meet the demands of end users is built right into a straightforward price.
Speed and flexibility is critical in today’s business. Leveraging the EMS bundle along with the additional products within the Enterprise Mobility product line will provide the answers to the security concerns that today’s BYOD environment creates. If you are interested in learning more about the EMS suite and how to leverage these features in your own environment, then I encourage you to review the Binary Tree webinar entitled "Microsoft Enterprise Mobility Suite: Are you missing the security story?" This webinar was recorded with a leading Microsoft EMS expert, and contains a lot of tips and tricks you will want to know.
Even the slimmest of IT departments can now harness the power of Azure to meet the demands of the BYOD worker. Time to go buy a new Surface Book!
Justin Harris is a Microsoft Certified Master on Exchange Server and a Microsoft MVP for Exchange Server. Justin is a Principal Solutions Architect with Binary Tree where his primary responsibility is designing the next generation of migration products. Justin can be found on Twitter at @ntexcellence or on the web at http://www.ntexcellence.com