AirWatch launches enterprise chat app, upgrades Inbox

With security-heavy features, VMWare's EMM provider is gunning for regulated enterprise segments where security is top of mind.


VMWare's enterprise mobility management (EMM) provider AirWatch made a few key announcements Tuesday as it kicked off its AirWatch Connect event in Atlanta. 

Notable among the news is the launch of AirWatch Chat, a containerized, secure instant messaging application for iOS and Android.

With Chat, AirWatch is gunning for regulated enterprise segments where security is top of mind, such as healthcare, government and finance. AirWatch says the communication tool enables employees to securely exchange messages with one another across an organization with its robust security and compliance capabilities, including FIPS compliant algorithms.

The company also touted Chat's user experience as being similar consumer SMS applications with its threaded messages, availability statuses, offline messages, and user profile pictures.

"AirWatch enables the enterprise to secure mobile content from end-to-end, but when employees use consumer SMS applications, they may inadvertently expose sensitive information and compromise mobile security," said John Marshall, SVP and GM of AirWatch by VMware. "We launched AirWatch Chat to provide a friendly user experience while extending the security and management capabilities IT demands."

Also on the announcement docket is a revamped AirWatch Inbox, a feature within the AirWatch Mobile Email Management suite. AirWatch says enhancements to Inbox extend enterprise-grade security capabilities and offer a more intuitive user experience to business-critical applications such as email, calendar and contacts. AirWatch Inbox will also be optimized for iPad to provide a consistent user experience and security framework across mobile operating systems and device types.

Additionally, AirWatch Inbox 2.0 for iOS and iPad features one-click meeting dial-in, which automatically inputs the conference number and access code from the calendar application.

"Email continues to be among the most consistently used applications on smart devices, particularly for corporate use cases, and AirWatch Inbox will provide our customers with advanced security and containerization for this business-critical application," Marshall added.