Many customers don’t think it’s possible to have experience, security, and choice in a single solution. They think a great user-experience comes at the cost of security, or vice-versa. They fear vendor lock-in, but also feel paralyzed in the face of overwhelming complexity. However, in a world of ever-changing internet conditions, it’s not realistic to think one set of cloud and network services can deliver the best performance across all app delivery systems. In reality, customers live in a multi-vendor, multi-cloud environment and enterprises need a dynamic app delivery solution to remain competitive.
Last month, we showcased our latest innovations at Mobile World Congress. This conference reflects the very sphere Citrix operates in: a truly connected and mobile world. We enable our customers to provide a seamless, secure, and easy-to-manage mobile user experience on any device, any network, any platform, and any cloud. Due to the unique nature of our offerings, we’re able to serve the growing needs of Service Providers (SPs).
The center of what SPs want to provide is a best in class mobile user experience. With the commoditization of technology, in the eyes of the users, places additional urgency for service providers to offer differentiated services to stand out amongst their competition. Citrix builds upon its heritage of 25 years of experience in delivering secure, digital workspaces with premium user experience designed for maximum user productivity. We extend this capability to mobile devices and optimized for a great mobile user experience.
Citrix partners with SPs to spur innovation, create new revenue-generating services, achieve flexibility and control and manage their customers’ journey to the cloud through a secure digital workspace with a best-in-class mobile customer experience. Perhaps most importantly, we offer true choice to SPs with the tools and services that adapt as their business evolves. MSPs are focused on three major components: the core network, data center, and managed services. Let’s breakdown the value Citrix adds to each of the these components:
The Core Network: Delivering a Software-Driven Customer Experience
The core network within a SP is responsible for delivering communications services to consumers and businesses. It is being virtualized and orchestrated as the entire service provider industry shifts toward software-defined networks and 5G and scales to support IoT.
Citrix helps SPs eliminate the need for expensive, proprietary hardware and all its associated inflexibility. We address the difficulty in managing these disparate resources with automated and orchestrated virtualized software, which can deliver a full range of innovative network functions which provide security, optimized app performance across any network. These are all delivered in software and easily integrated with orchestration systems. (See https://www.citrix.com/networking/ ). This means SPs can be confident in the performance and scalability of their network. Managing the core network with software is nothing short of critical in the age of massive traffic growth and a rapidly changing traffic mix.
Data Centers: The Power of Security, Intelligence, and Contextual Awareness
The data center is all about the secure delivery of apps and data for a superior customer experience. Today’s IT leaders seek increased productivity, differentiation, new revenue streams, and actionable performance insights. They need a secure and intelligent digital workspace that is contextually aware—that extends to wherever people chose to work and whatever they need to do.
That’s the power of our secure digital perimeter approach. It extends past the data center, even beyond the cloud, to virtually surround apps and the network while providing total visibility and control. True contextual awareness translates into a single environment that intuitively knows who should receive access to which apps and business functions, minimizes and hides attack surfaces as apps and data move outside the data center, and delivers a user-centric, personalized experience without compromising security.
We recognize that context also matters when improving the day-to-day, individual user experience of employees that constantly have to log-on to access corporate resources. At MWC, we unveiled Citrix Casting, a new service that comes pre-built into our new, Raspberry Pi-Powered Citrix Ready workspace Hbb device. Citrix Casting enables seamless and secure session roaming from a mobile device to any display connected to the workspace hub plus Wireless Docking, which allows a user to interact with their phone and cast any desktop/app session to any Citrix Ready workspace hub around them.
However, perhaps the most powerful use of contextual awareness lies within its application to performance data. We demonstrated our latest cloud offering, Citrix Analytics, This service leverages the diverse portfolio of Citrix products and solutions to collect and act on critical information, without the tedious task of deploying, managing, and maintaining third-party agents and sensors that competing solutions require. Data correlation and machine learning algorithms are used to generate and translate insights into actions which can be automatically applied to improve performance or mitigate security risks. The first use-case uses user-behaviour analysis to identify and manage compromised accounts.
In addition, Citrix also recently announced the acquisition of Cedexis, which not only enhances the Citrix Analytics solution with deep data on public internet and CDN performance, but also provides groundbreaking internet traffic management technology in order to to deliver a truly impactful and unique offering.
When we consider the business impacts SPs are after—lower costs, higher efficiency, better performance, tighter security, and enhanced IT operations, we’re confident context looks good on the bottom line, too.
Managed Services: Providing B2B Services to Enterprise Partners
Service providers are tasked with the challenge of offering new services to their enterprise customers while finding ways to monetize the investments they make in the core network and data center. Fortunately, subscription-based managed services create an entirely new revenue stream opportunity. Citrix partners with SPs so they can deliver a multitude of workspace and cloud services to their customers across the following categories: Managed Security Services, Access Services, and Workspace Services.
The Security Services that protect users, apps, and data are growing at a rapid pace, and SPs are basing their security services around the Citrix Secure Digital Perimeter portfolio. Examples include the Secure Web Gateway and Web App Firewall Service.
We recently re-launched our Secure Browser Service to combat the rising threat of ransomware, malware, and data theft attacks aimed at internet browsers. When the Secure Web Gateway detects a potentially dangerous website, the Secure Browser Service is invoked to securely manage the interaction instead of denying it outright. It’s our strategy to focus on the Web Isolation market and keep the internal, trusted network safe.
Access Services (Access gateway and SD-WAN-as-a-Service)
Access Services are a large area of growth for SPs because they go hand-in-hand with existing communication services offerings. They simplify access management, enable single-sign on, and drive the customer journey to the cloud. However, another major facet of access services includes SD-WAN-as-a-Service, which manages application traffic between branches, data-centers, and the Internet to optimize the customer experience as it relates to VoIP, Video, SaaS, and virtualized applications and desktops.
At MWC, we announced the expansion of our SD-WAN offering to cover the needs of managed service providers (MSPs) and Network service providers (NSP) who want to offer the Citrix SD-WAN as a service to their customers and subscribers. To top it off, we added a host of exciting new features to the program.
The early MSPs and SPs who have taken advantage of our program have gained a new revenue stream, increased customer loyalty, and helped their customers with cloud transformation. Citrix SD-WAN allows them to quickly connect their customers’ branches to AWS or Azure, and they can offer a consistent, secure connection to SaaS applications.
In addition to our program expansion, we unveiled a new 4G/LTE-enabled branch appliance at MWC for SPs who want to fold a wireless link into their service offering. The appliance supports all the features of larger SD-WAN appliances and cuts down the cost of customer premises equipment by integrating wireless connectivity with SD-WAN. The 4G/LTE link option enables SPs to turn up service at a new location quickly.
The Workspace Services category includes desktop-as-a- service, content and collaboration, unified end-point management (UEM), and of course, delivery of Microsoft apps and desktops and other SaaS apps. Take Citrix’s UEM Service for example. Since it’s delivered through the cloud, Citrix or one of its partners manages the infrastructure, which reduces SPs’ operating expenses. We enable the management of all types of IoT end-points and devices, and will continue to onboard new ones as they emerge, so our customers can innovate and stay ahead of the curve.
Innovation at MWC & Beyond!
The state of the industry is clear. The world is mobile, high-performance is non-negotiable, and the user experience must be contextually relevant. Continuing on the heels of the exciting announcements we released at MWC, Citrix is dedicated to delivering an exceptional customer experience, true flexibility in choice, and uncompromised security to the Service Provider Market. When we help Service Providers help their customers, we enable innovation across the entire landscape—and we’re just getting started.