VMware and Google have extended their partnership in an effort to bring Microsoft Windows to Google Chromebooks.
Redmond’s applications, data, and desktops are now available on the Google-based laptops—an attempt to modernize corporate desktops for what VMware called “the Mobile Cloud Era.”
The new service will provide secure cloud access to Windows features via VMware’s Desktop as a Service (DaaS) platform.
“Chromebooks are designed for the way people use computers today and are a secure, easy, and cost-effective solution to help organizations embrace a new way of doing business,” Amit Singh, president of Google Enterprise said, adding that the laptops can save businesses about $5,000 per computer.
With the option of a Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) or Remote Desktop Services (RDS) connection, users can access Windows programs using VMware’s Blast HTML5 technology from a Web-based application catalog on their Chromebook.
The DaaS program enables users to centralize other desktop environments and manage them as a cloud service, according to Rajen Sheth, director of Chrome product management.
Initially available to customers as an on-premise service, the program will eventually roll out as a fully managed subscription DaaS from VMware and other vCloud service provider partners. VMware Horizon View 5.3 and Google Chromebook customers, however, can dive into the new service today.
“Through our partnership with VMware, businesses can now capitalize on these advantages with access to legacy applications, data and desktops they need to keep employees productive,” Singh said in a statement.
In the midst of the PC market’s slow death, and the countdown to the end of Windows XP, the move marks another step forward for the Google Chromebook, which, according to NPD Group, accounted for 21 percent of all notebook sales in 2013.
“Deploying Chromebooks and taking advantage of a DaaS environment ensures that security vulnerabilities, application compatibility and migration budgets will be a thing of the past,” Sheth wrote in a blog post.