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Posted on by Peter Cooke in Product and company news

Highlights from first ever Germany Software2 User Day at Hochschule Ruhr West

The University of Applied Sciences Ruhr West played host to our first every German User Day on the April 10 2019. About a year after the incorporation of the Software2 GmbH in Germany, the turnout was great, with more than 40 participants meeting up to discuss AppsAnywhere in higher education.

The growth and acceptance in the German market has been phenomenal, and in our tradition, we're very proud to share company news, success stories, new features and product services with existing and potential customers. Our hosts, Ruhr West, also showed how they, after trying various other solutions without success, used AppsAnywhere from Software2 to virtualize and deliver their apps to students, both on-site and off-site.

The turnout and the active participation of our customers on this day was just fantastic. We also invited Jamf and Parallels to present their solutions to our customers, showcasing how they each integrate with AppsAnywhere to deliver any application to any device, including non-Windows and Apple devices.

So here are some highlights of the day!


Joint update and info on Software2 Europe

In true Software2 tradition, what will a Software2 User Day be without our Group CEO Tony Austwick opening the day. On this occasion Tony was joined by Edward Jansen van Rensburg, Managing Director for Software2 Europe. In this joint presentation they travel back in time to where it all started and then moved on to the future in presenting the road ahead. 

Check out the video below of their presentation:


All-new Packaging Service preview

Our Packaging Service was first launched last year at Durham User Day (UK) and has already become a huge success, saving customers time when it comes to packaging applications. In this video we discuss the outlines of the service and present the details of it to our German customers. We're now ready to provide this service to the German speaking world!

Watch the video of Edward presenting how it all works.

Die Höhepunkte von unser ersten Software2 Benutzertag an der Hochschule Ruhr West

Die Hochschule Ruhr West veranstaltete am 10. April 2019 den ersten Benutzertag in DACH Region. Etwa ein Jahr nach der Gründung der Software2 GmbH in Deutschland war die Teilnehmerzahl groß. Mehr als 40 Teilnehmer trafen sich, um AppsAnywhere in der Bildung Industrie zu besprechen.

Das Wachstum und die Akzeptanz auf dem deutschen Markt ist phänomenal, und in unserer Tradition sind wir sehr stolz darauf, Unternehmensnachrichten, Erfolgsgeschichten sowie neue Funktionen und Produktdienstleistungen mit bestehenden und potenziellen Kunden zu teilen. Unsere Gastgeber, Ruhr West, zeigten auch, wie sie AppsAnywhere von Software2 verwendet haben, nachdem sie verschiedene andere Lösungen ohne Erfolg ausprobiert hatten, um ihre Applikationen zu virtualisieren und an ihren Studenten sowohl vor Ort als auch außerhalb der Schule zur Verfügung zu stellen. Die Beteiligung und die aktive Teilnahme unserer Kunden an diesem Tag waren einfach großartig. Wir haben auch Jamf und Parallels eingeladen, unseren Kunden ihre Lösungen zu präsentieren.

Hier sind einige Highlights des Tages!

Gemeinsames Update und Informationen zu Software2 Europe

In echte Software2 Tradition ist ein Software2 Benutzertag nicht vollständig ohne das unseren Group CEO, Tony Austwick, den Tag eröffnen. Bei dieser Gelegenheit wurde Tony von Edward Jansen van Rensburg, Geschäftsführer von Software2 Europe, begleitet. In dieser gemeinsamen Präsentation schauen sie zurück in die Vergangenheit, wo alles angefangen hat, und präsentieren dann die Zukunftspläne von Software2. Wir schätzen unsere Kunden, und diese offene Diskussion zeigt auch unsere Absichten einer offenen Kommunikation mit unseren Kunden.

Schauen Sie sich das Video uber an.

Packaging als Service Vorschau

Unser Packaging als Service wurde letztes Jahr auf unserem Benutzertag an der University of Durham vorgestellt und ist seitdem ein großer Erfolg. In diesem Video diskutieren wir die Kontur von diesem Dienst und präsentieren diesen Service unseren Deutschen Kunden. Wir sind jetzt bereit, diesen Service für die deutschsprachige Welt bereitzustellen!

Sehen Sie sich das Video von Edward an, das zeigt, wie das funktioniert.

English translation and transcription

My name is Edward Jansen van Rensburg and I am the Managing Director of Software2 in Europe. Also here today is Tony Austwick from the United Kingdom. He is the group CEO as well as one of the founders of Software2.  

So, without a past, you can have no future. Our past began in 2009 with three people; Tony, Ryan (he’s at the back there and we’ll see him later) and Nic Johnson. They were the 3 founding members of Software2. I will hand over to Tony now and I’ll be back shortly.

So, in 2018 Corné and I started Software2 GmbH in Munich. I think almost everyone has already spoken to Corné Meulendijks. He is standing at the back there. So we started Software2 in Munich. The journey enfolded like this; we met Tony and his team the previous year. We then invited him to Austria and explained what we wanted to do. I don’t know if it was the schnapps………… We then started the company. Originally only for the DACH (Germany, Austria, and Switzerland) area und now we are covering the rest of Europe.

This is what Software2 looks like. We have the group that is basically the umbrella company with Tony, Ryan, Nic, the bookkeeping services etc. This is where the core business is. Then we have the Limited that does UK, Ireland and the rest of the world. We have installations for example in Australia, Saudi Arabia.  It is starting to grow worldwide. Then we have the Americas. The team there does Canada and America. This is the fastest growing area. And then lastly; from 2018 the GmbH in Europe.

We started off with one client. The Limited had the University of Bayreuth and we inherited them. We started fresh in January with nobody knowing who we or Software2 were or what AppsAnywhere was. Then we have Hardy Meier here today from the University of Applied Sciences Ravensburg-Weingarten. They were actually the pioneers. They said that they didn’t know us, but they liked Corné and myself and they’ll take a chance on us. We started there in May last year. They said that they would look at the software and try it. Speak to Hardy and find out if they are satisfied with the product. I believe they are. They will deploy it campus wide now and it is a success story.

Of course after a year, it looks quite different.  Ruhr West came along as well as other Universities in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. So these are a few of the clients. Every month we add one or two more clients. We see that this solution works well in the German speaking market. It means something. We believe that the clients we have are satisfied. The feedback we get from clients are that they save time and money and it’s easy to use. So that’s what we do.

So, what do we do with AppsAnywhere? So for those of you that doesn’t know AppsAnywhere, there are 3 specific areas. The first one is the Student Experience. We want to improve on what the students’ experience. Because that is what schools are rated on. If the students are satisfied and they can get all their apps without hassle and without needing a helpdesk, then everything is running smoothly. And that is our first point. But we don’t only want to do it for the students, but also for you as administrators. That is our second point, the application delivery. With Cloudpaging we have an easy way of delivering the applications.  That means that it makes life and the work easier for the Admins. Then there is the absolute benefit, Bring your own device. I always say that this is the Bring your own device dream. How many people here successfully uses the Bring your own device? No show off hands. Maybe one or two. So that was the dream. How long ago did we start talking about Bring your own device. Maybe 8 or 10 years ago. Still, a lot of clients aren’t that far yet. In America and the UK, Bring your own device is a big thing. The Universities that use AppsAnywhere, do it with Bring your own device. This is a big driving force for the Universities.

So, what do we do? We have a standardized application delivery. That means we have open integration into well-known products for example, Parallels RAS. Is Timo here? There at the back is he.  We’ll speak to him later where he will give more information concerning RAS. Then also Microsoft, VMware Horizon, Citrix Workplace as well as Jamf Pro. We also have Fabian here from Jamf Germany that we will speak to later.

So that means with our AppsAnywhere we have an open integration. So it makes no difference if an application is installed locally, being streamed, delivered with Cloudpaging, or a server delivery. These all come together in our app store and the student only needs to do one thing, and that is launch/start the app. How he actually gets this app doesn’t matter. This is something the system does in the background. So for the student it is quite simple. The student press the button and launch the app. We can control where he gets his app; online/offline, the location, on domain/off domain, even offline with license control. There is no other product that gives this solution. Only AppsAnywhere. That means our app store combined with various technologies really can support, Any app, Any device, Anywhere, Anytime. Thank you.

So like Tony said, we would like to invest. Invest in our service, how we can improve on this. Invest in the product, continuous development thereof and invest in clients. Our clients, because without our clients, we are nothing. That is our philosophy. Our clients are important and we try to get close to them. Please speak to the existing clients and ask them if we are succeeding. We hope and believe we are, because that is what we want.

So one of the areas around our service where we would like to invest more, is training; where we want to further train existing clients in packaging. In order to do that, we will offer CPA (Certified Packaging Associates) courses.

Another area we want to invest in, is our partners. We have one of our current partners here today, Connexio GmbH, Jan Beeken. Jan please stand up. This is Jan and his partner from Connexio. They are from the commercial side. Thank Jan. They are an ISP and host.  We sometimes have small schools saying to us that they don’t have the manpower to host and asking us to host. As Software2 we don’t do that, but we gladly work with partners to offer this service. For example, Telekom in the Netherlands or Connexio that has the capacity and knowledge to do this. It could then be that our partners also deliver a service to our clients. If you did not meet Jan over a beer yesterday, please say hello in the break. We would then work together with partners like these in Europe.

Then packaging. Packaging is one of the areas about which the clients stress the most. While having a drink yesterday evening, we spoke to some of the clients about who has the capacity and who doesn’t and then why not. Also about what is good and what is bad. So there we would like to invest and after the lunch break I will go into more detail about this.

Then lastly in personnel. From our side we would add staff to help with the technical side. As of yesterday, we have taken over Leon Walsh from the UK to do sales in the European Market. So we would strengthen our team.

So around training services. We have a training solution. When a client has installed, we will do a get-to-know the product training. This is the Software2 Associate. With this a client can start doing packaging.

Then we have a slightly more advanced training, The Certified Packaging Associate. This is a 5 days course with certification and it goes into more detail.

Then it goes further into the Certified Packaging Expert and lastly the AMP.

Packaging Services; I will go into more detail later on. We offer this from our side as well as together with partners. We also see that clients in certain countries and regions get together and if they have similar packages, exchange them. This can be done.  This is the nice thing about how we do our packaging. For example Uni Ruhr West can package a certain application and share it with other institutions. The other clients only has to import thein licences and voilà it is there and working. So this is the tidy solution that we have.

Now I have to do a quick survey. Our CPA training is normally 4 - 8 participants. We do it at the client as it is about real life experience. This is 5 days. We want to do this as soon as possible this year as we have had some interest from clients. We are looking for an organiser and venue to host this. The reason is that we have some small Universities that do not have a whole team of packagers like a big University, but only one of two people. Of course with one or two people it doesn’t really work well. So we want to ask our existing clients if there is someone that would be willing to host this. I know Hardy Meier from Weingarten is interested as well as the Biberacher. Michel from Nürtigen as well. So somewhere in the South and somewhere in the middle. Maybe Frankfurt. So I want to ask who has an available venue and then we can get a bunch of smaller Universities together and do the 5 days training. It will also save money and people can share. Tony also said that it is very important that we get the clients together. Please think about it and come and see me in the break that we can get something done in South Germany as well as middle Germany. We would appreciate it.

Another important issue for existing clients is the managed services that we provide. Tony said that we have 3 releases in a year. From our side (Softeware2) we have a managed service. That means we do the updates and upgrade with you and for you. There are no extra costs. This is part of our service to you. Worldwide we have that 99% of our clients say here is a VPN, we sign some documents and we do it from a fixed IP. We have the possibility to do this. Of course we don’t just enter your network. When the update is available, we do this with a helpdesk ticket and a time and date will be made. We open the VPN, do the update and exit again. Exactly the same with Support.

Important is that when there is a problem, we can offer quick support. We saw that this is difficult in the Germany speaking market as we first have to try TeamViewer and then it crashes and then we have to find someone to give authorisation. This then normally ends in delays.

So, it is important that if we can do it with a reliable remote solution it is better for all parties concerned. This is fast and cost nothing. If this cannot happen we have to do an on-site visit and this has a cost.

So as existing clients, please think about giving us access. I know with most of the clients here today, we have this possibility. This is also for future customers, this is part of our process. We don’t access with permission. We open up the VPN, do our job, and close it again. So this is important.

When we look at the investment into our product, we have the reporting side. Ryan will explain in more detail later. Also the user interface and of course the Cloud is an important topic. We have more and more clients wanting to use Azure. That can be done. The product is Azure ready. We see this mostly in America. They as well as Canada are more advanced. I know it the Germany speaking market cloud first is not yet a big topic. We do have the possibility to this either through a partner like Connexio or Microsoft with Azure. The product has been developed to include this if a client wants to make use of it.

Then the investment in our clients. We want better communication with our clients. We are busy establishing a forum. Hardy I know we discussed this last night….

We have quite a lot of clients in Spain. Like I said yesterday evening, this is in the planning stage. Then we also have our Pioneer program. Ryan will explain this later this afternoon. We would like to get closer to our clients and also get our clients to tell us what we can do better. We are open to everything, let’s communicate. Only with better communication can we improve the product and service. Thank you.