Demise of the desktop [continued…]

February 8, 2010

Some of you may remember one of my recent blog posts “2010: Demise of the desktop?” well, a recent report by business consultancy Deloitte, published in Computer Weekly, supports my sentiment. The article states that companies will increasingly allow their workers to choose their own devices to link into the corporate network. Interesting to note it also supports the idea of a self-maintenance or ‘car allowance’ type agreement that will help to drive adoption.

I think adoption of Hosted Virtual Desktop (HVD) will see organisations drive applications through web services or a common architecture ‘shop window’ like a browser. There is also the possibility to use a terminal server or desktop emulation software to ensure the processing stays within the organisations data centre. Exciting stuff!

However, the first hurdle in any move toward HVD is the perceived risk associated with loss of control. These risks include; security of your company’s network and data, as well as the means of accessing your company’s electronic assets; after all the information contained within these networks is the life blood of any organisation?

So how does a company lay down enough governance to protect itself? Well, one way of course is for organisations to continue to dictate security standards i.e. making it compulsory for staff to run Anti Virus (AV) software. But moving to HVD definitely needs wider consideration – it’s a potential mine field of regulation and risk. But once standards and policies are in place, I believe there are real business benefits to be enjoyed.

So what would your top three considerations for governance in providing the ability for you to adopt the notion of employee ‘self provision’ for access to corporate compute resources?

I don’t know about you, but I’d prefer to use my Apple laptop for work or maybe in a few years even an iPad!


2010: The Demise of the Desktop!?

December 17, 2009

2010 will be an interesting year for the IT market.  All predictions for future tech trends will only be successful at the right price, yes price… New trends will need to be value for money; show great ROI (return on investment) and demonstrate sustainable TCO (total cost of ownership).

Bar predicting (hoping) my team Tottenham Hotspur does well in the league … Let’s look at what could possibly become more than a pilot, idea or POC (proof of concept). Here are two ideas to start with that I think will be big trends:

1. More companies moving to Office web apps in the cloud, like Microsoft Azure, Google Apps for example, and…

2. The demise of the ‘traditional’ desktop – a move to hosted HVD (Hosted Virtual Desktop) driven office technology environments!

Let me explain my thinking behind this second one…Companies in 2010 will look to ‘buy into’ cheaper technology to ‘lower’ cost of entry.  As a possible alternative they could even think about providing a ‘car allowance’ type proposition to their staff where the employer provides the employee a monthly payment to ‘subsidise’ their own laptop or netbook and utilise HVD to connect into the companies centralised desktop infrastructure.

OK maybe radical thinking but 2009 has seen companies desperate to keep hold of their capital.  Could providing monthly payments in relation to the cost of running the business start to see such a prediction take off in 2010?

I myself would be more than happy to have an allowance and take ‘ownership’ of my own platform of choice and the maintenance associated with that device… but of course I’d say that – I am a techie! Does it work for everyone?  I am not so sure – I know security and control will be a big factor to consider but organisations are already going down the road of “self-support” for desktop users.

 So, let’s think about security – lots of ‘private’ devices connecting to a company network every Monday at 9am? Could you just open up the office network to be pure Internet access and have all the companies systems ‘zoned’ securely in the data centre. Employees could connect over an SSL (Secure Socket Layer), for example, over VPN (Virtual Private Network) to the hosted HVD environment?

 Could we start to see a progression to HVD? Where it’s not just the ‘bleeding edge’ organisations that take steps towards the demise of the desktop?

 What are your thoughts, would it work for you? Or more importantly, why wouldn’t it work for you? Will it be a tech trend that becomes common in the workplace? Over to you!!