Unlock the power of enterprise XR with VMware Workspace ONE & XR Hub:
Get your business ready for the future by preparing for the next-generation of mobile computing

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We’ve all heard about augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and even mixed reality (MR). But does extended reality (XR) ring a bell? It should.

XR is an umbrella term for all of these immersive technologies – along with any others that may emerge in the future. Because XR extends the reality we experience through the convergence of our real and digital worlds, it is set to become the definitive next-generation mobile computing platform, revolutionizing the way we live, work, learn, and play.  In fact, PWC believes that AR and VR have the potential to add $1.5 trillion to the global economy by 2030, transforming businesses, the economy, and society for the better.

According to Unity’s Top 2020 Trends report, 63 percent of companies surveyed stated that they’ve used immersive technologies to navigate the challenges of the pandemic, and 71% admitted that they plan to accelerate their use in 2021, due in part to COVID-19.

Today, organizations are leveraging XR for collaboration, virtual events, training, design and prototyping, remote assistance, augmented workflows, marketing, media production, manufacturing, and more. As a result, many of them have been able to reap one or more of the following benefits: lower complexity, higher productivity, decreased costs, increased efficiencies, reduced errors, improved safety, and substantial time savings.

While interest is surging and entry barriers are fading across nearly every industry vertical, organizations that experiment with immersive technologies for consumer and enterprise use often hesitate to deploy these solutions to production. This stems from a variety of challenges including hardware limitations, solution complexity, insufficient knowledge and expertise, poor user experience, lack of quality content and integrations, legal concerns, and issues securing, deploying, and managing the XR infrastructure.

In this post, we’ll examine how VMware’s Workspace ONE and XR Hub can help address some of these problems and enable enterprise XR.

5 requirements for enterprise XR

Immersive technologies are difficult to adopt! Organizations must satisfy the following five requirements to achieve a successful enterprise XR deployment. Failure to do so may lead to the project being stalled in the POC/pilot phase or getting stuck with a solution that isn’t flexible, secure, and scalable.

1. Centralized Device Management

Enterprise XR experiences can be delivered across a variety of devices such as PC-powered VR (PCVR) and standalone VR headsets, smartglasses, AR/MR headsets, and mobile devices – each device will run one of the following operating systems: Microsoft Windows or Windows Holographic OS, Linux, Android, and iOS.

While almost every business has an existing mobile device management (MDM) solution in place to manage desktops, laptops, tablets, and phones across their organization, today, XR devices cannot be easily managed out of the box. Some of the biggest challenges include manual MDM enrollment, no zero touch enrollment capabilities, constrained MDM device permissions, MDM changes require user permission, vendor EULA’s prohibit app launchers, limited amount of commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) software, vendor-managed identity or social media account requirements, and no multi-user capability.

With the right centralized device management system, companies will be able to streamline onboarding and configuration, simplify app deployment and lifecycle management, and unify management and security for any XR device with minimal additional effort.

2. Secure Access

By providing employees with increased access to company applications, content, and data, organizations can build and maintain a competitive advantage. But because XR devices aren’t currently connected to enterprise security systems, there’s no way to authenticate to a corporate identity management system, deliver applications and content based on user authorization, limit user access to approved applications and content, and/or control the user experience.

When evaluating an XR management solution, you’ll want to choose one that leverages corporate credentials and provides the ability to control access to devices, applications, content, and data at a granular level. It should also support multi-factor authentication (MFA), Single Sign-On (SSO), data encryption, per-app VPN, and secure remote file storage.

3. Enterprise User Experience (UX)

The UX for many XR devices is not suitable for enterprise use cases because they are solely focused on delivering a consumer app store with games, videos, and other content. Organizations should shy away from these types of experiences and choose an XR platform that can provide a customizable, branded enterprise UX that will be consistent across multiple devices and/or hardware manufacturers.  Through a custom launcher, your workforce will be able to access a unified app catalog and login to the applications that are provisioned to them in a simple and intuitive way.

4. Remote Rendering Capabilities

While standalone XR devices can deliver a solid experience, their CPU and GPU capabilities are limited.  Certain immersive technology use cases such as design visualization, training simulations, media production, and augmented workflows often require a higher level of fidelity. Choosing an XR platform that is remote rendering-ready will enable you accommodate virtually any use case because it combines the power of a workstation with the mobility of XR devices. Here, these high-fidelity XR experiences will run on a powerful virtual machine (VM) that’s backed by a GPU in your own private data center or public cloud provider and stream the experience over Wi-Fi or 5G networks to the standalone headset.

5. Content & Integration

It’s become evident that XR can help transform businesses, but without ample quality content, these technologies have limited potential.   When evaluating an XR solution, you should ensure that it provides access to the proper tools that will enable you to develop new content and build out the required 3D assets and supporting processes. Perhaps even more important is leveraging your existing and emerging technologies to import, optimize, and update your content and data for use in XR. For those data types that cannot be transitioned into XR, you’ll want to certify that your chosen solution can be integrated with any required legacy applications as well.

How VMware facilitates Enterprise XR

By taking an open and platform-agnostic approach, VMware is helping provide customers with the greatest flexibility and choice for their XR solution. Through the use of Workspace ONE and XR Hub, organizations will be able to realize the true value of enterprise XR.

With Workspace ONE Unified Endpoint Management (UEM), you’ll be able to enroll a variety of XR devices, manage the device policies and configuration, deliver a custom app library, deploy applications and content, configure per-app VPNs, perform remote troubleshooting and device wipes, track assets, view analytics, and much more. Workspace ONE Access provides the ability to lock down the user experience via kiosk mode, supports shared device management, can authenticate user credentials against a corporate identity provider (IdP), enables SSO to XR apps using device trust, and allows workers to launch and access authorized apps and content.

VMware’s XR Hub application, currently in beta, offers a native spatial UX that can deliver a consistent UX across different XR devices; it can also customize and control the user experience as well. Here, your business will be able to develop custom branded VR environments, supply customizable per-device tutorial videos, set/reset device pin codes, manage boundary and device firmware, enact productivity alerts, and deliver, display, and launch native VR apps, web-based content, and SaaS-based applications. XR Hub is also remote rendering ready – this means that when combined with NVIDIA’s Cloud XR protocol and VMware Horizon, you’ll be able to stream complex graphics to standalone headsets or mobile devices, launch 360 content and apps, access 2D apps and desktops in XR, view web content via a native XR browser, and send notifications to users.

With the breath and depth of XR capabilities built into the VMware Workspace ONE platform, what else could you ask for?

Need help evaluating VMware Workspace ONE and XR Hub?

As you might imagine, these digital realities extend beyond just creating digital experiences. They can also affect your company’s digital strategy, its business model transformation, content management systems, workforce transformation and training, infrastructure, operations, and much more.  SHI/Stratascale have the expertise and relationships to help you identify and build XR business cases – from evaluating the options around the technology stack, vendor systems, and the greater ecosystem, to integrating XR with other emerging technologies and your back-end systems to ensure the best business outcomes and much more.

To see a live demo and learn more about VMware’s Workspace ONE and XR Hub, sign up for one of our upcoming XR Tech Talks. And if you’d like to understand how XR can help you transform your business and get a leg up on the competition, register for our ABC’s of Immersive Technologies workshop.