Most businesses are now fully integrated with cloud solutions. As network support has allowed for stronger internet connections over the last decade or so, the use of cloud applications like Office 365 and G Suite have become second nature.
Cloud applications have a lot of advantages, such as the ability to access your data from anywhere and full integration with more devices – especially mobile. They also have lowered the costs of operation for many small and medium-sized businesses, allowing them to pay for just what they need and scale easily.
Approximately 1/3 of companies’ I.T. budgets are used for cloud services.
Businesses are using cloud solutions for data storage, accounting, customer service, and just about every other type of operational activity you can think of. So, where else is the Cloud going next?
The answer comes from a new product that Microsoft announced was globally available September 30, 2019. They officially launched the Windows Virtual Desktop, which not only makes non-cloud programs available in the cloud but also makes your entire PC environment cloud based.
Windows Virtual Desktop Overview
Imagine being able to take your “main computer” anywhere, without having to carry a thing. This eliminates the need to copy files back and forth between a home and work computer or a desktop and a laptop used for traveling.
Windows Virtual Desktop uses the power of Azure cloud server to make your office workstations available anywhere from any device, including mobile.
The technology loads all the things you normally would load on a computer hard drive on a cloud server environment instead. Including:
- Operating system
- Folders & file
- Computer settings
This means that you can log into that workspace environment from any internet-connected computer or mobile device and you’ll be sitting at your “computer” and have access to everything you would normally.
Microsoft’s entry into the virtual desktop arena shows that they’re betting that cloud-based PC environments are going to be the next wave of cloud adoption that takes business workflows to another level of connectivity.
Pros & Cons of Using a Virtual Desktop
Just like moving from a hard drive-based software to one that’s cloud based was a big step for many businesses a few years ago, the idea of moving all your computers to a cloud environment can seem just as daunting.
What are the pros and cons of moving to a fully virtual environment for your workstations? Here are several considerations to make when deciding whether Windows Virtual Desktops are right for your team.
Pros of Cloud-based Virtual Desktops
Cloud software has worked out pretty well for a majority of companies, which is why there’s been such as rapid adoption. Approximately 94% of enterprises use the cloud and 84% use multi-cloud strategies.
Here are some of the advantages of moving to a virtual cloud desktop:
- Available Anywhere: A big advantage of Windows Virtual Desktop is the ability to access your desktop environment from any location. This includes all your settings, files/folders, and software.
- Makes Non-Cloud Apps Cloud Accessible: For any software you use that is not cloud based, using it in a virtual desktop environment automatically makes it cloud accessible, which can be a huge advantage to companies that need to use specific software that doesn’t have its own cloud platform.
- Lower Hardware Costs: When you move to a virtual desktop environment, you don’t need a physical computer that’s as high performing or has a lot of hard drive space, because you’re just using it to access the cloud workspace. This lowers your cost when purchasing new computers.
- Always Updated: Your operating system is always kept updated automatically with Windows Virtual Desktop and administering all your workplace desktops can be done from a single control panel, saving time and ensuring security patches are updates are applied in a timely manner.
Cons of Cloud-based Virtual Desktops
Just because a technology is new doesn’t necessarily mean it will be a good fit for your business. You may also have to make upgrades to other areas of your infrastructure, such as wireless network, to support a new cloud-based technology.
Here are some of the disadvantages of using virtual cloud desktops:
- Only Accessible through Internet: Working offline isn’t possible using a virtual desktop unless you copy everything to an offline PC, which defeats the purpose of using a virtual desktop and can cause duplication of efforts.
- You’re More Reliant on the Cloud Service: For everything from data security to uptime reliability, when you’re using virtual desktops, you’re completely reliant on the cloud service provider. While Microsoft is one that’s a pretty strong partner, they also are susceptible to downtime, just like anyone else.
- Differing Desktop Experiences: If you’re on a slower internet connection, your experience is not going to be as smooth as when you’re on a faster connection, and you may experience lag time. And while you can access your desktop from a mobile device, the experience is not going to be as robust due to the small screen as when using a computer for access.
Get All Your Virtual Desktop Questions Answered!
When it comes to the use of new technologies, you want to make sure you’re making an informed decision. Texas I.T. Pros can answer all your questions about the new Windows Virtual Desktop and help you weigh all the pros and cons specific to your business.
Contact us today to schedule a consultation. Call 940-239-6500 or reach out online.