The Benefits & Challenges of Hosted Desktops (Part 1 of 2)

Part one – recent research on why companies are adopting hosted desktops

In this series, we will be examining in further detail the full benefits of hosted desktops and to some extent, virtualization and the cloud as a whole. A recent survey found that when most companies are asked what they consider virtualization to be, servers are the things that spring immediately to mind.

The study, carried out by IDG Research Group, found that whilst many businesses are currently investing in server virtualization (72%), the use of hosted desktops is rapidly gaining momentum too. Of those asked, 41% of respondents to the survey said that they are currently investing in hosted desktops.

Those surveyed cited the main benefits to their company as being:

  • Reduced costs – 54%
  • More manageable desktop environments - 54%
  • The ability to provision PCs and other client devices centrally – 52%
  • More secure desktop environment – 50%
  • Greater control over desktop resources for IT departments – 49%

Of course, these are the most common reasons for using hosted desktops; from an employee perspective there is also the opportunity to allow for desktop customisation, which is not possible with the older ‘dumb terminals’.

However, the main benefits lie within the IT department for larger businesses; desktop virtualization allows IT managers more time and resources to concentrate on other aspects of the company requirements, as patches and security updates can be easily deployed. They also have to worry less about the security aspect and support needs of the end user.

Another big plus for secure hosted desktops is the ‘green’ issue, something which is becoming increasingly important for many firms to take on. The eco-friendly message is really getting ‘out there’ now and more and more consumers are becoming further interested in companies that have made steps to reduce their carbon footprint.

Indeed, depending on the type of business you are in, this can affect whether a consumer deals with you or not, as many potential clients now investigate the ethos of a company before they use them.

This is evident in all types of businesses, all around the world; just a simple Google search will flag up thousands of sites dedicated to environmentally helpful resources, such as ecotourism and suchlike. So whilst ‘the survey says’ that many companies consider green IT initiatives to be low on their priority list (23% thought it important), perhaps it’s worth considering that whilst it may not be high on the list for the business, it might be for your customer.

Of course, as with any project, careful planning should be put into place when considering if a simple hosted desktop is all that’s needed – what challenges that may arise and what benefits individual businesses.

For GoCloud VDI resellers, it’s wise to consider the benefits that your clients will enjoy in specific areas, so that you can effectively target and sell your product to customers who will gain the most.

To do this, the challenges that may be faced by some businesses will have to be taken into consideration – this will really help pin down your target market – we will be covering these in  part two of the series.