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Meaningful Health Care Informatics Blog

Mar 11 2013   8:54PM GMT

What mobility means for desktops in HIT

Posted by: RedaChouffani
mHealth apps, mobile devices, mobility, tablets, VDI

More and more mobile users are using their devices to access enterprise content and cloud hosted data related to their organization. This has enabled the workforce to access information from anywhere, at anytime. But there are still some limitations to mobile devices, preventing them from being able to completely overtake and replace the traditional desktop market.

Desktops and laptops provide clinical and administrative staff the horsepower and platform to run line-of-business applications that enable them to capture, retrieve and visualize information. Mobile devices aren’t able to perform such functions. Mobile devices are limited by lack of compatibility, or scarcity of some of these applications in the mobile platform arena. While we continue to come back to our laptops and PCs, the availability of virtual desktops and on demand cloud-based apps is continuing to shrink our dependency on traditional workstations. These mobile platforms allow users to run many of their critical business applications on cloud-based desktops that are completely accessible from any internet-enabled device.

Virtual desktops, available on tablets and mobile phones, offer a wide variety of functionality that enables IT departments to efficiently manage and deploy desktops and applications to mobile devices, tablets and any platform over the Internet. Vendors such as Citrix, VMware, and Microsoft offer products that enable users to virtualize their desktops.

There are some vendors that are taking unique approaches to ensure end users have choices.

VMware Horizon Mobile is a suite of providers that allows employees to add a virtual identity to their phone and deploy entirely customized mobile profiles based on employees groups. This enables effective application deployment, system security and better control over the apps that are rolled out on personal devices.

Ubuntu, which is known for having a successful version of Linux for desktops and servers, has announced that it is planning on launching a mobile version of its operating system in 2013 or 2014. The mobile operating system is based on their desktop environment and offers many of the capabilities. This means that future end users could run one operating system from any device.

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