Riverbed Technology has announced new Steelhead Mobile capabilities that allow organisations of all sizes to deploy a cost-effective mobile WAN optimisation solution with increased scalability, speed and simplicity.

In this release, Riverbed is introducing Steelhead Mobile Controller – Virtual Edition (SMC-VE), increased capacity for the Steelhead Mobile Controller (SMC) appliance and additional application-level latency optimisation for Steelhead Mobile. Organisations from small-to-mid-size businesses (SMBs) to the largest global corporations can take advantage of these new features to provide their mobile workforces with LAN-like access to corporate files and applications.
"Productivity is a major challenge for mobile workers as companies embark on IT consolidation projects that result in workers being further from their data," says Zeus Kerravala, senior vice president at Yankee Group. "With many companies looking to expand the number of users that work remotely, it’s clear that a solution designed to optimise the performance of applications when a worker is mobile is critical. By expanding the scalability of its mobile WAN optimisation solution, Riverbed is providing
companies of all sizes with the opportunity to give mobile and remote workers LAN-like access to corporate files and information and broadening its market reach."
Mobile WAN optimisation can help almost any company improve the performance of critical applications for remote workers while also significantly cutting corporate IT costs. For large Steelhead Mobile deployments and rapidly growing organisations, Riverbed already offers the Steelhead Mobile Controller appliance to allow IT managers to quickly and easily deploy Steelhead Mobile to all of their remote workers. To meet the needs of every size organisation, Riverbed has expanded the scalability of its Steelhead Mobile solution, including the new SMC-VE and additional licence capacity on the appliance, making its solutions available to a broader set of customers.
Riverbed’s SMC-VE will make enterprise-grade acceleration more accessible to SMBs. In addition, larger organisations that have a small number of mobile workers will be able to implement cost effective deployments of Steelhead Mobile.
SMC-VE is a virtual package deployed on the Riverbed Services Platform (RSP), a virtualised platform that resides on the Steelhead appliance that provides customers with the capability to run up to five additional services and applications in a protected partition on the Steelhead appliance. By running SMC-VE within the RSP, Riverbed offers enterprises the opportunity to obtain all of the same benefits of Steelhead Mobile while eliminating the need to purchase additional hardware. Enterprises can purchase as few as ten initial Steelhead Mobile licenses, up to a total capacity of 100 licences and manage those concurrent licences with SMC-VE running within the RSP to make it easier to cost-effectively target mobile users in environments where the additional scale of the SMC is unnecessary.
In addition to reaching smaller organisations with the SMC-VE, Riverbed is increasing the total licence capacity of the appliance-based SMC for the largest enterprises. The SMC is now capable of managing 2,000 additional licences for a total of 4,000 licences – no additional hardware is required. This will make the SMC the most scalable mobile WAN optimisation solution available with double the scale of any other mobile offering.
"As people move to centralise their data and employees continuously move around the globe to conduct business, organisations of all sizes will be challenged with application latency and reduced employee productivity. We continue to enhance our WAN optimisation solution to help companies overcome these specific challenges," says Christo Briedenhann, country manager: Africa at Riverbed.
"These enhancements are a direct result of interactions with customers who want to empower their mobile workforce but the size of their deployment requires a flexible approach and a broad product offering. These new Steelhead Mobile capabilities will allow us to provide both the smallest and largest companies with the ability to increase mobile worker productivity at a lower total cost of ownership."
Riverbed is also announcing support for application layer Lotus Notes acceleration for mobile users. Riverbed is the only vendor to provide this capability which improves the speed at which mobile employees can access large e-mail attachments and manage calendaring, resulting in increased collaboration across dispersed geographical locations.
The Riverbed Lotus Notes acceleration was developed directly with IBM to optimise e-mail, calendaring and web, and can deliver performance gains of more than 18 times. Riverbed introduced Lotus Notes application layer acceleration for remote offices in October 2008. With the introduction of Lotus Notes acceleration for mobile workers, Riverbed is the only vendor to deliver a complete Lotus Notes acceleration solution for both mobile and remote office workers.