Cisco upgrades AnyConnect to support Android 4.0 and higher

UPDATED: Cisco could have more Android users on its hands as it upgrades its AnyConnect VPN client for Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean.

Cisco is giving a boost to its portfolio of mobile device security solutions with the roll out of AnyConnect 3.0 for Android.

For reference, AnyConnect is a VPN client designed to enable on-the-go employees with encrypted network connectivity for access to corporate email, apps and more.

Thus, the latest version of AnyConnect for Google's mobile operating system was built to support the Android VPN Framework (AVF), which in turn enables AnyConnect functionality on any Android device running version 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) or higher (including version 4.1, a.k.a. Jelly Bean).

Additional new features and improvements include rejecting untrusted certificates by default and allowing users to be able to their mobile devices with an internal Certificate Authority Server without opening up the server to external threats.

Product marketing manager John Oh emphasized Cisco's understanding of the BYOD trend in a blog post on Friday, citing in-house figures as both evidence for and the motivation behind tackling this growing trend in the enterprise world.

For example, Oh noted that Cisco has "surpassed the 20% tablet penetration among our workforce and mobile devices continue to grow at a rate of 1,000 each month."

Along with being available in Google Play for Android smartphones and tablets, AnyConnect is also ready to download for free for Amazon's Android-based Kindle tablets -- including the new Kindle Fire HD -- directly from the Amazon Appstore.

The app is also available on iTunes for all iOS devices. However, not all of these new features are supported for the iPhone 5 and iOS 6, but Cisco is promising to add these same features for Apple mobile users soon.

UPDATE: Cisco has made some corrections to its initial announcement for this release, adding that this is technically not an upgrade but a feature-release -- not a new release for ICS/JB support. Here's the clarification that Cisco published itself:

Maintaining our market leadership in supporting the broadest set of Operating Systems (desktop and mobile) and Web Browsers, Cisco Security is excited to announce the availability of AnyConnect 3.0 for Android (Download here). As in the past, we have worked with the market leading Android device makers along with supporting the Android VPN Framework (AVF) to ensure the latest AnyConnect functionality. These new features are now available on any Android device running on version 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) or higher (including Jelly Bean).