Mobile device

Samsung offers VMware Horizon on a mobile device monitor

Samsung has made it possible to run the VMware Horizon virtual desktop on an external monitor connected to a Galaxy smartphone or tablet. This capability gives hybrid workers without a PC the ability to use a larger screen.

Samsung’s Desktop Experience (DeX) dual-mode lets users connect their Galaxy mobile devices to a monitor, keyboard, and mouse to run Android and Windows apps on a larger screen. People can join the devices with Bluetooth or a USB-C cable.

The latest announcement extends display capability to VMware’s virtual desktop running on a Galaxy device, Samsung said last week. Companies running VMware’s virtual desktop infrastructure in the data center have requested this feature to make remote working more accessible.

“It’s an almost perfect time for this,” as company employees oscillate between working remotely and working in the office as the COVID-19 pandemic wanes, said IDC analyst Phil Hochmuth. Plus, using an external monitor makes employees more productive, he added.

Some employees might be using a Galaxy device and monitor instead of a PC, said Forrester Research analyst Andrew Hewitt. “This should make it easier for IT admins to manage hardware remotely, since they won’t have to send entire PCs to people’s homes – maybe just a few peripherals.”

Users can run a VMware Horizon virtual desktop on two monitors using Samsung DeX on a Galaxy smartphone or tablet.

Samsung devices supporting the latest features include the Tab S series, starting with S4, and Tab Active series tablets, starting with Active 3. Other hardware includes the Galaxy S series of smartphones, starting with the S8 and all Z Fold series smartphones.

Samsung’s latest mobile devices, Galaxy Tab 8 series tablets and Galaxy S22 series smartphones, will support screen sharing when running the Horizon virtual desktop. Samsung unveiled the new hardware at its Unpacked event last week.

Samsung designed DeX to turn its flagship devices into thin clients. In addition to VMware, Samsung has worked with Microsoft to run a Windows virtual desktop on their devices.

Running a virtual office on a mobile device has become more feasible in recent years due to the rise of more powerful smartphones and tablets. Finance and healthcare are among the industry verticals most likely to use mobile devices instead of a PC.

Proponents say mobile desktop virtualization provides flexibility for workers on the move and solves security concerns when a device is lost or stolen. But until Samsung’s latest release, mouse input was not possible on some legacy apps, including virtual desktops.

Maxim Tamarov is a news writer covering mobile and end-user computing. He has already written for daily news in Jacksonville, North Carolina, and the Transcription of the sun in Winthrop, Mass. He can be found on Twitter at @MaximTamarov.