Riverbed Technology, the performance leader in wide-area data services (WDS), has delivered on its promise of delivering LAN-like application performance to any employee – whether on the road, working from home, or connected wirelessly in the office – with the general availability of its Steelhead Mobile product.

"The knowledge workforce is increasingly mobile, with a requirement that employees be available 24/7 and be as productive outside of the office as they are at headquarters," says Eric Wolford, senior vice president, marketing and business development at Riverbed. "But the remote application performance degradation that comes from insufficient bandwidth or application latency often stalls applications and affects performance.
"For example, a PowerPoint presentation that opens in seconds in the office may take many minutes to download from a hotel room. Smart organisations see that this trade off is no longer acceptable and are turning to Riverbed for the solution. Steelhead Mobile gives untethered workers virtual in-office application performance – whether they're sitting at home, in an airport lounge, a hotel room, or a coffee shop."
Zeus Kerravala, senior vice-president: Enterprise Research at the Yankee Group, comments: "Our research in the US and Europe shows that 41% of workers are mobile today, spending at least 20% of their work time outside of the office.
"With the availability of Steelhead Mobile, Riverbed is extending the performance benefits of its remote office products to potentially millions of mobile workers, improving both productivity and user satisfaction."
Early interest in Steelhead Mobile reinforces analyst predictions of the need for solutions which eliminate the performance headaches and productivity barriers that mobile and remote workers often face.
Gartner forecasts the client-based WAN optimisation (SoftWOC) market will exceed $200-million in 2008, while the hardware-based market will exceed $1-billion. And an IDC report predicts that there will be approximately 543-million mobile office workers by 2009. This growth in mobile office workers is putting tremendous demands on IT as it struggles to deliver realtime performance to mobile staff and improve productivity.
Steelhead Mobile brings Riverbed's WDS technology to notebook and desktop computers, liberating mobile and remote workers to collaborate and do business in real time from anywhere by taking a multi-tiered approach to optimisation, addressing the problems of bandwidth, latency, and application protocol inefficiencies through a unified solution.
Steelhead Mobile, running on the Riverbed Optimization System (RiOS), utilises data streamlining, transport streamlining, and application streamlining to provide data reduction, compression, and transport protocol optimisation.
With RiOS, enterprises can reduce traffic on the wide area network (WAN) by as much as 95% and transport layer roundtrips by up to 98%, allowing organisations to successfully deliver faster application performance while avoiding bandwidth saturation.