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Networking Unplugged

Perspectives on cloud networking and software-defined WANs

Posted July 20, 2015
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Why Cloud-based DaaS Is Blowing New Life Into VDI

Over the last five years, the merits of VDI (virtual desktop infrastructure) have been widely debated. In a nutshell, VDI is a form of hyper-converged technology for desktop computing that combines desktop virtualization, computing, storage and networking. The goal has been to centralize desktop workloads (e.g. client applications, office automation, etc.) to reduce the cost of ownership and security challenges associated with managing traditional remote desktops. Critics have charged that the benefits of VDI are outweighed by the cost and complexity of deploying and managing VDI solutions within the corporate datacenter, and that user experience that can be finicky to tune, especially over wide-area networks (WANs).

However, cloud computing and workforce mobility are changing the drivers, economics and delivery method around VDI while giving rise to a progeny called Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS). On one hand, you can think of DaaS as hosted VDI, but that’s selling it short. Modern DaaS providers leverage the power and economics of the cloud to provide a more distributed, scalable and resilient solution that delivers on the promise of VDI for a broader set of SMB and enterprise customers.

To learn more about the trends within the industry, I reached out to Steve Prather, CEO of  Dizzion—a fast-growing, venture-backed DaaS service provider that counts TELUS, Delta Dental, and AARP among its customers (full disclosure: Dizzion is a Pertino customer).

Steve saw a huge opportunity for Dizzion as traditional carriers and hosting providers were ill-equipped to deal with the desktop connectivity requirements that emerged as they pushed their enterprise mobility and cloud solutions. Unlike IaaS providers that primarily cater to in-house IT and cloud teams, DaaS providers must support end users across all lines of business from the IT helpdesk technician to the call center employee in the Philippines. Blending cloud-based technology delivery with managed services is only one reason why DaaS is blowing new life into the VDI market.

According to Steve, DaaS has made it easier for customers—specifically SMBs and mid-market organizations—to realize the many benefits of a VDI deployment without incurring the cost and complexity, including:

  • Zero capital outlay for computing and storage infrastructure

  • Enabling BYOD and reducing the costs associated with bringing on new employees and supporting multiple types of mobile devices

  • Vastly extending the life of desktop devices via migration to thin clients (some customers have more than doubled the length between desktop refreshes)

  • Reduction in IT and support staff requirements (e.g. people, training, etc)

  • Built-in disaster recovery and business continuity via DaaS solutions

  • Massive power savings (one Dizzion customer reported for every 2,000 users they switch from traditional desktops to DaaS-enabled thin clients, they save $12K/month in power alone)

The benefits of DaaS are not just limited to cost of ownership:

  • Compliance: DaaS inherently keeps data centralized and controlled compared to traditional desktops, making it ideal for compliance-driven industries.

  • BYOD Security: DaaS creates a unified experience for end users across all devices while isolating BYOD devices and keeping them from indiscriminately accessing main office and datacenter networks.

  • Green: DaaS significantly reduces the power consumption footprints at both the desktop and the cloud datacenter. Cloud datacenters are substantially more efficient per compute hour than all but the largest of enterprise data centers.

These stated benefits, combined with increased prioritization around securely managing desktops, mobile devices, and cloud workloads, have led industry analysts at Research and Markets to project a 39% CAGR (compound annual growth rate) for hosted VDI (DaaS) in the US market from 2015 to 2019.

Dizzion defines itself as an innovative leader in providing DaaS. Delivering superior performance, user experience and time-to-value requires an elastic, reliable and scalable service delivery infrastructure. Dizzion relies on Pertino’s Cloud Network Engine platform to create secure, cloud-based virtual networks to support connectivity between cloud data centers and to extend connectivity instantly to their customer sites without the need for legacy IPsec tunnels and MPLS networks.

To learn more about how companies are building managed service offerings utilizing Pertino’s cloud-based virtual networking solution, please feel free to contact me at (408) 502-5401 or  jgrose@pertino.com. You can also read more about our Cloud Network Engine platform here.

Josh Grose

Josh Grose

Customer Advocate

Josh joined Pertino early on and has been helping enterprise customers unleash the potential of SDN and cloud networking ever since.

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