VMware Horizon

Introducing Unity Touch for iOS and Android

By Pat Lee, Director Product Management, End-User Computing

Today, I am excited to introduce Unity Touch as part of the new VMware Horizon View 2.0 clients for iOS and Android! We have spoken to many Horizon View customers and they have said clearly that they need Windows apps on their mobile devices but those applications are difficult to use on small screens.  Unity Touch makes it easier to run Windows apps on your iPhone, iPad, or Android device.

With Unity Touch, users can easily browse, search, and open Windows applications & files; choose favorite applications and files; and switch between running applications, all without using the Windows start menu or task bar.

To see Unity Touch in action, watch Scott Davis’ video introducing the Unity Touch technology:

What is Unity Touch?

Unity Touch is our design center for making Windows and Windows apps easier to to use on your iPhone, iPad, or Android device. The initial release of Unity Touch includes the following features:

Intuitive Sidebar Makes Windows on Mobile Easier Than Ever

The new Unity Touch sidebar automatically opens the first time you connect to a Unity Touch enabled Horizon View 5.2 desktop. The sidebar makes it easy to navigate the Windows All Programs and My Files folders from your iOS or Android device. After you find what you are looking for, the sidebar gets out of your way by automatically retracting. To get the Unity Touch sidebar back, just single left to right swipe or click on the moveable tab.

Launch Windows Applications with Ease

Just touch on All Programs in the Unity Touch sidebar to easily find and launch your Windows applications.

Open Files in Your Horizon View Desktop with a Few Simple Touches

My Files makes it easy to open the files and folders you care about in your Users folder including Documents, Desktop, Music, Pictures, Videos, Downloads and common cloud storage local folders including Horizon Data, Dropbox, and Box. Just touch on My Files in the Unity Touch sidebar to easily navigate and open the files you care about in your virtual desktop.

Instantly Search for Applications and Files

Use the search bar and quickly search for the applications and files in your remote desktop and get instant results that can be launched with a simple touch. You can even use iOS or Android voice dictation to search for applications and files in your Horizon View remote desktop.

Favorites Apps and Files Follow You From Device to Device

You can create a custom list of favorite applications or files to easily access from the Unity Touch sidebar. Just click on Manage under Favorite Applications or Favorite Files and select your favorite items. Your favorites are remembered across all your mobile devices, whether when you switch from an iPad to a Galaxy Note to a Kindle Fire HD, your favorite apps and files are the same across all your devices when using the Horizon View Clients for iOS and Android.

If you have more than four favorite apps or files, Unity Touch will only show the first four items to save space. Touch the Favorite Applications or Favorite Files header in the sidebar to show all your favorite apps or files.

Predefine Favorite Apps for Your Users

If you are a Horizon View administrator, you can pre-populate the Favorite Applications for all your users for their initial access their virtual desktop. See the “VMware Horizon View Feature Pack Installation and Administration” for more details.

Switch Between Applications or Quit Apps from the Unity Touch Sidebar

Unity Touch makes it easy to switch between running applications, just open the Unity Touch sidebar and touch the application or open window under Running Applications. Unity Touch will bring that application to the foreground.

Want to close apps or windows and find tapping the red close box “X” challenging? Not a problem, Unity Touch makes it easy to close windows or applications.

On iOS devices, just open the Unity Touch sidebar and do a left to right swipe on the window or application in Running Applications and click Close.

On Android devices to quit an application or close an open window, open the Unity Touch sidebar and do a long press on the window or app in Running Applications and select Close from the popup menu.

Getting Unity Touch…

Unity Touch has two key requirements: a VMware Horizon View 5.2 desktop and the VMware Horizon View Client 2.0 for iOS or Android.

If you are a VMware Horizon View administrator, you need to update to your Horizon View virtual desktop environment to VMware Horizon View 5.2 with the new Horizon View 5.2 Feature Pack. Once you have moved to Horizon View 5.2 with the Horizon View 5.2 Feature Pack, your View environment will be Unity Touch enabled for your iOS and Android users on the latest VMware Horizon View Clients. The new Horizon View Ciients are available from the iOS App Store, Google Play Store, and Amazon AppStore for Android stores, or you can find them here.

We look forward to hearing how you put Unity Touch to work in your environment!