Citrix and Google Cloud announced a big expansion to their existing partnership today that covers G Suite and Google Cloud Platform.
The two companies are working together so that users can run virtual desktop environments on Google’s cloud infrastructure using Citrix Cloud. That will allow companies to do things like provide their employees with a virtual environment running on Google servers that works much like a traditional desktop or laptop computer would.
On the end user productivity side, Citrix is working to integrate its ShareFile service with G Suite. That starts with a new Gmail plugin that lets customers securely send files that are managed by Citrix’s software with a connector to Google Drive. The two companies are also making it possible for customers to edit documents stored in ShareFile using G Suite.
In addition, customers that use Citrix’s Netscaler CPX load balancer to manage containers will be able to run that on GCP as they would in a private cloud environment. That feature dovetails well with Google’s focus on Kubernetes for container orchestration as a tentpole of its cloud platform.
Google isn’t the only cloud provider working with Citrix on virtual desktops. The company also allows customers to deploy to Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure. However, many companies are at the very least evaluating deployments with different cloud infrastructure providers, and this move could help draw customers to GCP.
Cloud virtual desktops have proven to be a growth business for Amazon, which operates its own WorkSpaces service that allows companies to spin up virtual computers inside its cloud environment.
The G Suite integration also shows Google’s continued focus on partnering with other companies to expand the reach of its productivity suite in competition with Microsoft Office 365.