April 10, 2013

Online/Offline: Zimbra Takes HTML5 Route with New Software

Sorry rockers, but “Judas Priest” is just a codename for the latest version of the Zimbra (NewsAlert) Collaboration Server (ZCS) by VMware, which will sport an HTML5 Web client interface for both online and offline use.

Right now, the Version 8 offering of ZCS (which launched last September) has both a Web interface and a desktop application, but with the new version, the company is looking to merge the two experiences, enabling users to work both online and offline by way of the same client interface.

Version 9 of the software, a.k.a. Judas Priest, is equipped with HTML5 capabilities so that users can access it by desktop, tablet and mobile device with support for native clients using sync protocols.

Jon Dybik, a Zimbra product management leader, described the current ZCS as “essentially an offline HTML experience using SQL lite to store data, Jetty to serve our Web app locally, and Prism—Firefox—to render the client UI.”

In its latest HTML5-empowered incarnation, Zimbra will be able to cache the Web client application in local storage and provide SQL services in Chrome, IE and Firefox so as to keep readily available copies of e-mails, calendars and contacts. 

Also getting a makeover is Zimbra’s mobile Web application. The company looks to give it a more agile user interface and provide support for touch and swipe gestures that are so common in tablets and smartphones.

ZCS can be installed on customer premises or accessed as a cloud-hosted subscription. VMware hasn’t announced when this next version of ZCS will ship.

Edited by Braden Becker


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