Aventail has extended its OnDemand service to provide Java secure sockets layer (SSL) virtual private network (VPN) technology to support anywhere, anytime access to corporate networks on a Pocket PC.
Jude O’Reilley, director of product marketing, said this new version, which will be available from 30 April, delivers the first SSL VPN to secure PDAs as securely as a traditional desktop or corporate laptop.
"Remote access people are more everyday users that may or may not have a business reason to travel, or they might just have a business reason to access resources when they are not in the office," he said.
"SSL VPN makes access secure enough that a company can provide access over the intranet to a very broad range of applications. SSL VPN gives the opportunity to provide access not just to that 15% or 30% of workers who are travelling users, but to that much broader group of users we call day-extenders…people who extend their day by doing additional work at home."
O’Reilley added that this advancement in SSL VPN will allow people to use PDAs for "real work".
IDC research analyst Eddie Chan noted that it would take some time before corporations start treating PDAs as replacements instead of complements.
"It’s not going to be anytime [soon] where PDAs become truly acceptable. Part of it is display, part of it is that people are accustomed to using a full-sized keyboard…for the masses it’s going to take some time for the technology to migrate," Chan said.
Pricing starts at $24,000 (£15,000) and includes web-based access to web applications and to file-shares integrated with a company’s directory and managed with a company’s policy.