Patents are a valid protection against intellectual property theft. They are granted by the relevant authority on behalf of a sovereign state: for example, the US Patent Office in America, and the Patent Office in the UK. Once granted, patents assign exclusive rights to the assignee (inventor) for a limited period (usually twenty years) from the award of the patent.
This is a very strong protection of the inventor of a thing, as it prevents other, more established players from copying their ideas without licensing it. It is a valid and correct way of dealing with the protection of Ideas.
Unfortunately, over the last twenty years or so, the system has appeared to have begun falling apart and harming the very innovation that it was supposed to protect. Companies have sprung up that have a business model of buying up patents from dead companies and then suing other companies for infringements. Why do these people and companies chase these cases? Well, the rewards can be large for the victor and very damaging for the losing party.
The announcement was doubtless welcomed by iPad owning View users and brings VMware in line with the competition. Citirix and Quest both have an iPad client for their respective solutions; with a number of vendors, including iTap, Jaadu, Wyse providing RDP clients via Apple’s Appstore.
While some vendors have a charge for their iPad client – VMware has followed in the practice of Citrix and Quest and made their client free for download.
Yet, there is no such thing as a free lunch. While there may be no charge for the client app, is there a cost implication to the business? And of course, I’ve written “iPad” but as the iPhone loses to ground to the wealth of Android devices, it would be fair to say that the question of “what-is-the-cost-of-connecting-to-your-services-with-a-new-generation-mobile-thing” covers a range of devices that are being brought into the work place: not only the cool tablet de jour courtesy of Mr Ive, but the ever more popular Android smartphones and tablet devices such as the Motorola Xoom or the Samsung Galaxy Tab.
There may be an executive clamor to introduce these devices, the cost of installing the relevant client may appear to be nothing and the services of IT may not be needed to perform the installation – but, what licenses need to be available to allow access using these new kids on the block?
How free is a free VDI client on a tablet or a smartphone?