Citrix is preparing to relaunch its core XenApp product later this quarter after admitting that partners' and customers' perception it was being swallowed up into another product offering affected its latest financial results.
XenApp is an application virtualisation product designed to provide enterprise customers with Windows apps as secure mobile services.
But when it was integrated into Citrix's wider XenDeskop product - which virtualises the entire desktop and not just applications - in 2009, some partners and customers thought this meant XenApp as a standalone product was no longer available, which Citrix insists was not the case.
"There [have] been a few issues that have been impacting overall results in the desktop and apps business," said the vendor's then-chief executive David Henshall on the firm's Q4 earnings call.
"[One issue] has been the perception that XenApp was going away, as this product has been de-emphasised in messaging and in go to market.
"But based on feedback from customers and partners, we are relaunching XenApp this quarter with the next-generation 7.5 edition.... We've had overwhelming requests from partners and customers to reassert that technology and demonstrate the road map that we're delivering."
One Citrix partner, who did not want to be named, said that by bundling XenApp with XenDesktop, Citrix has a better shot of gaining market share.
"They have defocused on XenApp because they want and need virtual desktop [market] share, and you can only get this with desktop licences," said the source. "[Roughly] 80 per cent of the implementations we do of XenDesktop are only for the use of XenApp functionality, but this does help [customers] future proof their investment.
"[XenDesktop] a bit dear, but you get to use XenApp too."
Citrix's Northern Europe channel director Kevin Bland insisted it has always been available by itself in the past, and the new iteration will be too.
"I think part of the challenge with XenApp historically... is if you're going to talk to a customer who wants to talk about desktop virtualisation - and they see that as being their solution - talking about application virtualisation is not what they want to hear. It's not the conversation they want to have.
"But XenApp still exists in its own right, you can still buy it - absolutely."
US-based Citrix partner Sigma's chief technology officer Elias Khnaser welcomed Citrix's move to relaunch XenApp on a blog published by Virtualisation Review.
"The irony with Citrix is it has excellent vision and fantastic products, but sometimes it makes decisions that are truly mind boggling," he said. "Citrix, you messed up with XenDesktop. Now you are setting the record straight and that is a welcome step."
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