When last we heard of virtualization specialist VMware’s efforts on the Android platform, they were decidedly corporate in nature, with VMware View making a sort of logins and profiles so that Android users could better separate their work and personal assets on the same device. Android Community has learned that the company is shifting its focus towards consumers, with their next product, which we are told is nearing completion. VMware’s Android app should be revealed sometime in the next few months, and it will be ready for use on Ice Cream Sandwich.
What will the software be? Our contact couldn’t say. Most consumer-level end users are familiar with VMware because of their OS virtualization offerings, specifically VMware Fusion, which allows Windows apps to run seamlessly on OS X hardware without dual-booting. A mobile version of VMware Workstation, which allows just about any operating system to run on a virtual machine inside of Windows, is not out of the question. Then again, VMware has been hard at work over the last year on cloud services for the corporate set, and that effort may be ready to jump to mainstream audiences.
I’d love to try my hands on an honest-to-goodness virtual machine for Android, loading up apps for PalmOS and Windows Mobile with ease. As vibrant as the app scene for Android is, there’s things you just can’t get on Android, like my beloved Space Trader. Virtualizing Windows Phone 7 is technically possible, but the strain that would put on even the best Android hardware might make it impossible. Recent full versions of Windows are probably out for the same reasons. WebOS is an option now that it’s open source, though given the timing, it’s unlikely that it’s what VMware has in mind .we’ll be keeping a close eye on the company for further developments.