Telefonica, Verizon soon to offer virtualized Android phones

Telefonica will offer Samsung phones and Verizon will sell LG phones that use VMware's Android hypervisor

Telefonica and Verizon in a few months will become the first operators to offer Android phones running VMware's mobile hypervisor, the companies announced Wednesday at the VMworld 2011 Europe conference in Copenhagen.

VMware has previously said that Verizon would offer the service, without disclosing details about timing, but this is the first time Telefonica has said it plans to offer phones with the hypervisor.

Users of phones with the VMware product will find two profiles on their devices: one for personal use and one for business use. The setup allows for the isolation of enterprise apps from apps available on the open Android Market that could be malicious.

The operators will be making slightly different offerings, said Steve Herrod, chief technology officer for VMware.

Telefonica will make its offering available initially on the Samsung Galaxy SII. Unlike Verizon, Telefonica will allow users to have two phone numbers, one for business and one for personal use. That means a user will be able to have two voice and data subscriptions on one phone.

Telefonica is able to make that offering using dual-SIM cards. Such a setup would be more difficult for Verizon, which will only allow one phone number on its service, because of its network technology.

IT managers will be able to remotely control the business side of the phone using software from VMware. That software lets administrators remotely wipe just the corporate applications and data, push applications to the phones and set policies for the corporate profile. Telefonica will offer the IT management features as a hosted service.

Verizon will instead offer that software to enterprises to run from inside their firewalls, Herrod said.

Verizon's offer will initially be available on LG phones. Phone makers must build part of the necessary software into the phones before they hit shelves, meaning the selection of compatible phones initially is likely to be small. LG and Samsung are the only two manufacturers to have announced their support of VMware's technology.

Neither operator is announcing specific launch dates or pricing but say the service will be available in the coming months.

VMware first started talking about its mobile hypervisor late last year. Interest in the concept of separating business applications from personal, particularly for Android phones, appears to be growing.

Last week, AT&T launched a service called Toggle that allows users to separate work applications from personal applications on Android phones. It's based on technology from Enterproid, which is different from VMware's in that applications must be built using Enterproid's technology in order to be separated from the rest of the phone.

OK Labs is pushing a similar concept for isolating certain applications. Last week, Red Bend started talking about its own virtualization technology, which would work similarly to VMware's, but it hasn't announced phone or operator partners yet.

Nancy Gohring covers mobile phones and cloud computing for The IDG News Service. Follow Nancy on Twitter at @idgnancy. Nancy's e-mail address is

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags telecommunicationLG ElectronicsSteve HerrodSamsung ElectronicsMobile OSesAndroidmobileVMwareTelefónicaVerizon Wirelessvirtualization

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Nancy Gohring

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

D-Link PowerLine AV2 2000 Gigabit Network Kit

Learn more >

D-Link TAIPAN AC3200 Ultra Wi-Fi Modem Router (DSL-4320L)

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1000x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards

Learn more >

Xiro Drone Xplorer V -3 Axis Gimbal & 1080p Full HD 14MP Camera

Learn more >

ASUS ROG Swift PG279Q – Reign beyond virtual world

Learn more >

Crucial® BX200 SATA 2.5” 7mm (with 9.5mm adapter) Internal Solid State Drive

Learn more >

Gadgets & Things

Lexar Professional 2000x SDHC™/SDXC™ UHS-II cards

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1000x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards

Learn more >


Learn more >

Family Friendly

Lexar Professional 2000x SDHC™/SDXC™ UHS-II cards

Learn more >

ASUS VivoPC VM62 - Incredibly Powerful, Unbelievably Small

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1000x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Lexar Professional 2000x SDHC™/SDXC™ UHS-II cards

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1000x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Best Deals on Good Gear Guide

Latest News Articles


GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy


First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni


For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell


The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi


The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott


My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.


Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?