Enterprise users, rejoice: you can now run Windows on your iPad, thanks to VMWare. Meanwhile, Apple [AAPL] might have dropped Samsung in favor of TSMC for the manufacture of the A5 processor used inside the iPad 2 and future iPhone and iPod touch products, including the future 64GB iPhone.
What I like -- and many enterprise users may also like -- is that the App lets you access virtual Windows desktops using your iPad, your network (WAN or LAN) and your company servers.
Windows without walls
This means you can have access to your Windows-based corporate systems using a much easier to tote around iPad, in the office or in the field. VMWare also have some interesting information on how iPads are being deployed in the enterprise. This really is much bigger than a fad, ladies and gentlemen. Despite some detractors, the post-PC age thing is not a myth.
Explaining its new solution, VMWare says:
"The iPad client is fully supported over Wi-Fi or 3G connections and with PCoIP at the core you'll be sure to get a great user experience. Tight integration with View 4.6 means that logging into your View desktop from the iPad is easy and reconnection to the desktop is also simple with the ability to select from a list of previously connected desktops.
"iPad users will feel right at home interacting with their View desktop using the gestures we've implemented making it easy to do things like click, select, drag and invoke the soft keyboard. We've also included support for Bluetooth or dock connected keyboards for those prefer to type on a physical keyboard. In addition to keyboards we've also added support for the iPad VGA connector which will let you connect your View desktop to an external monitor or projector. If you wanted to, you could realistically go iPad full time!"
Joining similar solutions from Citrix and others, VMWare's move means that yet another significant barrier to adoption of iPads within enterprise markets has been removed. Indeed, the portability and long battery life of the iPad in combination with the inherent additional security you enjoy by not carrying data with you could translate into a significant enterprise advantage for Apple.
[ABOVE: Purely for amusement, here's an Auto-tuned Apple CEO Steve Jobs singing praises to the iPad 2 in the style of Blink 182]
Samsung loses A5 supply deal?
All change in Apple's supply lines too, where Samsung maybe has lost the deal to supply Cupertino's A5 processor. This flies in the face of a previous report this month which claimed Apple had reached a deal to purchase more processors from Samsung.
The Korea Times told us Apple was receiving about "5,000 application processor sheets per month from Samsung" in a previous report claiming the order had quadrupled, the implication being that Apple is preparing for quadrupling demand for iOS devices. Apple sells two iPhones every second at present.
The friendly Samsung deal may be on the way out. This might be in reaction to the Korean firm's attempt to bundle its way into Apple's tablet business. EETimes tells us TSMC may now make the A5 processor for the iPad 2. Rumors of such a deal first began in January, though the deal remains unconfirmed.
Buried within the report is a nugget of valuable information. The current A5 chip will be produced on 45-nanometer process -- but in future Apple hopes to achieve even more performance from its low power processor with a future move to adopt 28-nanometer process technology.
A6 to be a speed demon
Using such a process will enable Apple to deliver products with even better battery life, and could conceivably create a chance to deliver new breeds of ultra-mobile devices. All powered by what seems set to be the A6 processor.
Given that Apple was hoping to quadruple its order with Samsung, it is worth noting that TSMC has the highest-yielding 40-nanometer process in the foundry world, and the largest capacity. With the news of a processor supply move being only a rumor at this point, I do feel that is possible TSMC has been bought in to supplement Samsung's efforts. I look forward to future tear-down analyses.
"As the tablet war shifts into the pricing front, many companies will find it difficult to compete with Apple, which has a significant cost advantage over the competition,'' a new report from VLSI Research. states. "While some of these tables will likely gain traction in the market place, many others will not."
It's a risky business.
Signing off, as reports emerge claiming we can expect iOS 5 and a significant MobileMe upgrade as soon as April, some may be interested in this video (via MIC Gadget) which claims to depict a 64GB iPhone-- this in fact turned out to be an older prototype from last year (2010).
It is interesting to consider in-the-field prototype testing, given that Apple is almost certainly testing iPhone 5's right now, with a view to introducing the device somewhere around WWDC in June.
There's a lot to munch through today. I was ever so pleased with the extent of debate on yesterday's post -- agree or disagree, communication keeps it interesting.
Please let me know your thoughts on VMWare, the Samsung/Apple relationship and the iPhone 5 in comments below, and I'd be very happy if you chose to follow me on Twitter so I'm able to let you know as new reports get published here first on Computerworld.