​Red Hat enters mobile software market with Samsung

Red Hat has long been a power in Linux servers. Now, with a new software stack and a partnership with Samsung, the Linux giant is going for mobile business users.
Written by Steven Vaughan-Nichols, Senior Contributing Editor

What do you do when you're king of the Linux server mountain and you want more? In Red Hat's case, you develop a new mobile software stack, Red Hat Mobile Application Platform (RHMAP), and you partner up with the world's top Android smartphone vendor, Samsung.

Red Hat and Samsung are partnering up to create Android business apps.
This isn't to say that Red Hat will become just another Android app vendor. The Raleigh, NC-based company's focus is still primarily on business, operating systems, the cloud and middleware.

According to the companies' joint announcement, Samsung Business Services and Red Hat plan to deliver:

  • Business applications: A series of enterprise-ready, industry-specific mobile applications that will run on the RHMAP and address key workforce management and business tasks, such as business intelligence, field and customer service, inventory management and sales catalog, pricing, ordering, and invoicing. The applications will be designed so that they can optionally be customized and tailored to fit the needs of an organization's unique needs. The mobile applications will run on Android and other operating environments via the RHMAP, and will be configurable to integrate into common enterprise back-end systems.
  • A developer ecosystem: Tools and resources to build and nurture a new ecosystem of enterprise partners and developers to promote rapid innovation and availability of solutions that meet both current and emerging needs in mobility.
  • Support services: Integrated support for customers and partners, Enterprise Mobility Management (EMM), and global delivery and support services for the Red Hat Mobile Application Platform.
  • Business collaboration: Red Hat and Samsung Business Services plan to actively engage in joint go-to-market activities for the solutions developed through the alliance.

All this is being built around Red Hat's new Red Hat Mobile Application Platform. This platform incorporates technology from Red Hat's October 2014 acquisition of FeedHenry, an enterprise mobile application platform provider with Red Hat's JBoss Middleware and OpenShift Platform as a Service (PaaS) portfolio.

RHMAP has an open and extensible architecture based on Node.js for client and server side mobile app development. The platform offers developers the flexibility to create native (Android, iOS, Windows Phone and Blackberry), hybrid, HTML5, or web apps. The platform also supports a wide variety of toolkits including native Software Development Kits (SDKs), hybrid Apache Cordova, HTML5 and Titanium, as well as frameworks such as Xamarin, Sencha Touch, and other JavaScript frameworks. It simplifies back-end integration to business systems, speeding app delivery with reusable connectors and plug-ins to common enterprise systems such as salesforce.com, SAP, Oracle and, of course, JBoss.

Red Hat Mobile Application Platform's goal is to "simplify and accelerate the development, integration, deployment, and management of mobile solutions by allowing collaboration across development teams, such as front-end application developers, back-end IT integration, and DevOps teams."

At this time, this is a beta project. The developer offering is available on Red Hat's public cloud application development and hosting environment: OpenShift Online. Full support for the RHMAP in production environments via OpenShift Enterprise is planned for the coming year.

Red Hat also announced that it will establish an open-source upstream project, FeedHenry, for RHMAP. This project will open its door in 2016.

In a statement, Craig Muzilla, Red Hat's senior vice president of Application Platforms Business, said, "Effective and successful enterprise mobility strategies take into account both platforms and devices, and how they come together to help enable powerful end-to-end mobile solutions. We're excited to join with Samsung in not only delivering a new generation of mobile solutions for the enterprise, but in empowering customers to achieve new levels of innovation in mobile."

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