|Issue:||North America 2013|
|Topic:||Don’t fight BYOD – adopt desktop virtualization|
|Title:||Chief Executive Officer|
Raj Dhingra is the Chief Executive Officer for NComputing, a global provider of accelerating desktop virtualization; he is a twenty-year veteran of the technology industry with general management, business development, product delivery, sales and marketing experience. Prior to joining NComputing, Mr Dhingra was Vice President and General Manager at Citrix where he led the company’s desktop virtualization business. He is recognized as an industry expert in desktop virtualization and has been a speaker at industry events and TedX.
Raj Dhingra holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Electronics Engineering from Birla Institute of Technology and Science; and an MBA from Stanford University.
As BYOD usage grows, organizations are increasingly looking for ways to implement it in a manageable, secure and cost effective manner. There are a number of ways to accomplish this, but most of the solutions require far-reaching, costly and complex, difficult to maintain measures so many organizations find it difficult to respond to the challenge. Browser-based virtual desktops greatly simplifies the task of enabling BYOD in a secure, cost-effective, easy to maintain and manage manner and their use is rising.
Are you fighting BYOD – bring your own device – in your business or organization?
Whether you are a small business or large enterprise, a school district or a local government office, you probably are facing requests from employees and concerns from IT regarding this trend.
No matter what metric you may wish to use, it’s become evident that the mobile device market is going through hyper-growth. Global shipments of smartphones and tablets exceeded the sum of desktop PC plus notebook shipments in Q4 2010. The installed base of smartphones and tablets is expected to exceed the installed PC base of approximately 1.6 billion by Q2 2013 and projected to almost double by 2015 (Source: Morgan Stanley Research). Global mobile traffic is 13 per cent of Internet traffic; just three years ago it was only one per cent . In India, mobile Internet traffic surpassed desktop Internet usage in May 2012 (Source: StatCounter Global Stats).
Mobility and mobile devices are heating up BYOD. Driving this trend are workers who want choice in the devices they use at work. Over half of workers surveyed say their personal technology is better than the hardware and software supplied by employers. Naturally, they prefer to utilize their personal technology. Another third of employees surveyed say they have actually spent their own money on devices for use at work purposes (Source: Forrester 2012).
BYOD is on IT’s agenda. A shift, however, is now underway; BYOD is transitioning from an ad hoc accommodation to an IT strategy enabling more flexible access to corporate information systems without restrictions. Indeed, in 2011, 74 per cent of companies said they allowed BYOD in some fashion in their businesses (Source: Aberdeen Group 2011). Clearly, a groundswell of users expect and want to access their work data and applications anywhere, anytime in order to do their jobs, while also accessing their personal apps and content. In their digital lives outside of work, they’re experiencing – and enjoying – an ecosystem of smart devices and cloud services that are transforming how information is accessed, consumed, and shared.
New generations of tablets – and variants – of Apple iPads, Android, and now Windows 8-powered tablets are fuelling consumer adoption and accelerating the BYOD trend and there are no signs of it slowing down.
Some corporate IT organizations have been relaxed about BYOD while it remained on the periphery and made special concessions, for example, for the CEO who preferred an iPad to a laptop. When BYOD moves much more widely and deeply within the organisation, alarms tend to go off.
From the perspective of corporate IT, the more standardized the environment, the easier and more cost-effective it is to manage. To IT, BYOD looks like Pandora’s Box. Allowing people to bring any device onto the corporate network and its usage seems to be a step backwards for IT managers who have battled to control and centralize management. Thus, many enterprises are finding it difficult to respond effectively to BYOD issues regarding security, compliance, manageability and control.
Over the last 25 years, IT has lived through the challenges of managing PCs and laptops and the nightmares of implementing systems management, security policies and data protection and management. BYOD introduces new concerns about managing devices that are not company-owned and potentially a large number of devices than the number of users.
Over the last one or two years, many vendors have introduced solutions to address these challenges. In general, they try to manage devices, manage applications or manage data or a combination. Their goal is to create a corporate environment isolated from a user’s personal environment. They use a variety of technologies and strategies such as creating containers or virtual environments on mobile devices, thereby creating a ‘virtual space’ to protect the application and might encrypt the data as well. These technologies have spawned new names: Mobile Device Management (MDM), Mobile Application Management (MAM), and Mobile Virtualization, for example.
There is, however, much complexity in learning, picking and implementing these new solutions; and the complexity increases far beyond that of managing PCs. For example, if a company had 1000 users and 100 applications, IT was managing 1000×100 instances of applications on the 1000 PCs or laptops in the organization. If a user uses more than one device, then the management complexity goes up depending upon the type of mobile management technology in use.
There is another approach to supporting BYOD in a corporate environment that does not require management of devices, applications or data on mobile devices. Desktop virtualization enables the centralization and management of apps and desktops, as well as the delivery of the virtual desktop to any device.
Desktop virtualization technologies have matured since their arrival in 2006. In addition to providing a ‘follow me’ desktop, applications and security, they have extended their support to tablets, smartphones, laptops and BYOD. Desktop virtualization enables IT to use virtualization technologies to create a standardized environment for operating systems and applications and to be device-agnostic. In fact, it finally allows IT to get out of nightmarish business of device management.
In our company example, with desktop virtualization, IT can focus on managing only the 100 applications and their delivery to any device – whether a thin client, a tablet or a home PC. The number of devices is no longer important. IT can manage once, and securely deliver to an unlimited number of devices anywhere. This approach is more strategic for IT and definitely less complex.
Enterprises need to evaluate next-generation desktop virtualization solutions that enable the transformation of the desktop and also support the growing need to work with BYOD, securely and anywhere. Organizations must look, however, for solutions that are purpose-designed to deliver simplicity in deployment, a better high-performance user experience than a PC, and aggressive value at much lower cost.
Implementing a desktop virtualization solution that delivers all three of these elements -simplicity, performance and value, A virtual desktop opens the door for helps your business become more agile and gives users – employees, partners, and guests – a BYOD strategy that balances IT’s need for control and management with user freedom of choice. With a BYOD strategy in place, users can be more productive and satisfied by accessing their work data and applications, as well as personal applications and content, on any device anywhere, anytime.