Dell has signaled its intention to enter the bring-your-own-device space with the announcement of its latest acquisition — snapping up data protection software provider Credant Technologies.
The terms of the deal have not been disclosed, but it will be seen as yet another sign of the mobile device management market’s consolidation. Less than two weeks ago Citrix tied up a deal to buy Zenprise, illustrating the increased value that big companies are placing on software that helps them to manage mobile devices brought to work by their employees.
Credant provides a range of software and services designed to encrypt data and keep it secure as it bounces from smartphones and tablets to physical servers and the cloud. The company claims that its software is versatile to co-exist with any existing enterprise management system, and keeps things simple by providing a single console for data protection policies. Credant has been around for a long time, and says that since its founding in 2001 it now secures over 200 million endpoints from industries as diverse as media, healthcare, education and defense.
Dell and Credant actually have a bit of previous, as Dell already uses Credant’s technology in its own data protection/encryption products. In its statement, Dell said that it now intends to use Credant’s software to boost the encryption capabilities of its OptiPlex, Latitude and Precision computers.
The deal will help to serve Dell’s greater goal of transitioning away from selling technology and into offering enterprise solutions. It could be that Dell will try package Credant’s software with its new device management technology, the Dell KACE K3000 Mobile Management Appliance, which was unveiled at Dell World last week. K3000 allows IT managers to manage mobile devices, permissions, turn off and lock devices, and see which apps employees are using, all from one location. In addition, Dell might also try to fit this into the acquisition of SonicWall, which allows for remote data access inside enterprise, behind the firewall.
But don’t expect to see any major innovations coming out of this soon. Wikibon’s Dave Vellante pointed out on theCUBE that Dell has been making so many acquisitions lately, it could take as many as four years for these plans to mature and for the company to come up with a product that can seriously compete with its rivals.