Citrix deepens cloud integrations with Google, Microsoft

Citrix also announced a slew of new capabilities and products for its Workspace portfolio.

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Citrix Systems is holding its annual Synergy conference in Atlanta this week and is marking the event with a slew of product and partnership announcements. Among the key updates is news that Citrix is expanding its partnerships with Google and Microsoft and also rolling out new intelligent capabilities to its digital workplace portfolio. 

Citrix is largely known for its Workspace Suite, which includes its server and desktop and application virtualization products XenApp, XenDesktop, and XenServer, along with XenMobile mobile-device management tools, ShareFile Enterprise file sync and sharing, and networking. Its 2018, the company's annual revenue stood at $2.97 billion.

On the partnership front, Citrix is deepening its long-running integrations with Google and Microsoft. With Google, Citrix is collaborating with the tech giant on a new product called Citrix Workspace with Machine Creation Services on Google Cloud. The primary function of the product is to extend the Citrix Workspace to Google Cloud, making it easier for admins to deliver apps to Google devices and operating systems hosted on Google Cloud's infrastructure.

The companies also revealed plans for interoperability between Citrix and Google's Cloud Identity, which will let customers log into a Citrix Workspace using G Suite credentials. Citrix is also integrating with identity and access management providers including Okta, Ping and Radius for this service. Another upcoming Google integration will enable companies to automatically notify employees about events from their Google calendars through personalized feeds within the Citrix Workspace. 

Citrix also announced plans for a virtual instance of the Citrix SD-WAN appliance available in the Google Cloud Marketplace, along with increased integration of the Citrix application delivery controller (ADC) with Google Cloud Platform (GCP), Kubernetes, service mesh with Istio architectures and open source CNCF tools.

As for its nearly three-decade long partnership with Microsoft, Citrix announced a new desktops-as-a-service (DaaS) product called Citrix Managed Desktops for Microsoft Azure. The service is designed to simplify the delivery of Windows apps and desktops from Azure to devices. The turnkey cloud service is intended for SMBs and lower mid-market businesses with a phased rollout planned for Q2 2019. 

The companies also announced plans to deliver real-time optimization for Microsoft Teams for Citrix virtual desktop infrastructure, offering users a native and fully featured Teams experience within Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops that include the optimization code for Teams VDI. The companies are also integrating Citrix Workspace with Teams. 

Meantime, Citrix also introduced a behavior-based BOT detection capability delivered in Citrix ADC to help mitigate attacks like password spraying, credential stuffing, and content scrapping. Citrix also integrated risk indicators and user and entity inventory from Microsoft's Graph Security API into Citrix Analytics to give admins a unified threat intelligence view across their Citrix and Microsoft products.

Finally, Citrix announced its intent to officially support enterprise customers running Citrix Virtual Apps and Desktops service workloads with VMware-based clouds, starting first with VMware Cloud on AWS. Citrix said the aim is to make it easier to extend app and desktop workloads without additional resources.