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Could Windows 365 transform your business?

Microsoft has launched Windows 365 for a hybrid world! Find out whether it can transform your business, by reading our blog post.
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It’s never been easier to introduce Windows Virtual Desktop into your business

Getting started with Windows Virtual Desktop can seem daunting but new developments mean it’s now easier than ever.
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Could Windows 365 transform your business?

At the beginning of this month, Microsoft released the next new development in their product ecosystem, Windows 365. Windows 365 was developed to support the changing workplace model, with the bold statement that it’s a ‘hybrid Windows for a hybrid world’. 

The product’s aim is to be easy to use, familiar and always available, regardless of the location of the user or the device they are using. So could it transform your business? Below we will discuss what Windows 365 is, its benefits and how it can transform your business.

What is Windows 365?

Windows 365 is a service that allows users to access cloud PCs from anywhere, on any device streaming a Windows 10 desktop in a web browser or through the Microsoft Remote Desktop app. When users log into the service they are greeted with all the same apps, tools, data and settings from previous sessions, enabling a productive hybrid workforce.

Whilst this virtual desktop technology is not a new concept, and although Microsoft already offers Azure Virtual Desktop, what makes Windows 365 stand out is its simplicity. In the past, desktop virtualisation has often been complex, costly and difficult to manage without in-house expertise. Windows 365 simplifies this process with easier management and a simple per-user monthly subscription cost.

Benefits of Windows 365 for businesses and end users

The key benefit of using Windows 365 is its simplicity, both for the end user and the business. A Windows 365 user can have a personalised desktop that will have the same apps and settings each time they log in, even if it is on a completely different device. As it is a Microsoft service it also seamlessly integrates with other Microsoft cloud services. Once the user is connected to Windows 365 the computer will function as if it is a typical PC, with multi-monitor support and the ability to use the camera and microphone for Teams audio and video calls. For the business, it is simple to create new virtual desktops as the business grows and billing is always predictable as it is per-user pricing.

Another key benefit of using Windows 365 is that it greatly increases security. As more businesses work remotely or in a hybrid work model, it has been difficult to ensure that all devices accessing company data are secure. Windows 365 solves this problem as the image for the PC can be set up by an IT admin to have strict security policies to ensure that all company data stays safe and secure. 

How Windows 365 can transform your business

As the workplace has fundamentally changed over the past 2 years, the way businesses view computers should change too. For businesses that are implementing a hybrid workplace model, Windows 365 can aid in this process. It allows the possibility for businesses to decrease their hardware costs as the physical device does not need excessive computing power: the compute is through Windows 365. This also enables businesses to consider a Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) programme which allows employees to use hardware they are familiar with whilst having the same security protocols as a work-issued device.

Similarly, many businesses require, or may benefit from, an elastic workforce. This may include temporary interns, consultants or contractors that need access to a work device for a short period of time. In the past, the only way to accommodate these workers was to have a surplus of devices available. With Windows 365, temporary workers can bring their own device and have a cloud PC deployed for the time they are working for the company.

Finally, in some organisations the amount of computing power employees need may fluctuate depending on the projects they are working on. Windows 365 allows businesses to change the amount of computing power quickly and easily on each cloud PC to ensure employees have the best experience whilst optimising costs.

Windows 365 marks a new era for hybrid working and virtual desktops in general. If you want to find out more about how Windows 365 can transform your business, get in touch today.

cloud readiness

It’s never been easier to introduce Windows Virtual Desktop into your business

As organisations are increasingly adopting flexible working methods, their technology must also adapt to suit. Beyond just adopting solutions for communication, modern businesses need to keep their data secure and their employees safe from threats in a way that suits their budget and resources.

Microsoft’s Windows Virtual Desktop (WVD) has proven uniquely placed to cater to new methods of working. By providing employees with a cloud-based virtual machine, they can benefit from the same experience regardless of the device they are using. WVD enables IT teams to provide a secure desktop with sanctioned apps while ensuring data never travels outside of the business-controlled environment.

In the financial, education and healthcare sectors, WVD offers particular value. It allows business-critical applications and services to continue running regardless of the situation or environment. An Azure-hosted machine can run 24/7, 365 days a year without the on-site support required to prevent damaging downtime.

Businesses that subscribe to Microsoft 365 or Windows 10 can also greatly simplify and optimise licensing through WVD. Desktops for new or existing hires can be created at no extra charge and scale to meet hardware demands at the drop of a hat. A single virtual machine can host multiple sessions, further increasing cost efficiency.

We offer a Windows Virtual Desktop PoC service. Click here for details >

Windows Virtual Desktop new deployment and management experience

During this uncertain business climate, the above advantages can be vital. That said, many organisations are intimidated by the setup process, regardless of their size or sector. Thankfully, a recent update to the software has made implementation of virtual desktops easier than before.

In April 2020, Microsoft announced a new deployment and management experience that sits directly within the Azure Portal, where all of your virtual desktops are managed. With the new experience, admins can deploy and manage desktops, apps, users, and diagnostics much more efficiently. While knowledge of Azure is still required to be able to run the system, the bar has lowered from expert level to intermediate knowledge.

Microsoft has also added capability to WVD to better suit flexible work environments. WVD now seamlessly incorporates Microsoft Teams, a huge draw for many businesses that use Teams and have considered virtual desktops. The camera and audio functionality on personal devices can now be easily linked to the cloud-based desktop without the traditional latency pitfalls.

While enabling app access through WVD is important, so is ensuring those apps stay secure and compliant. Recent WVD developments mean that admin users can now store metadata within a specific Azure region or reduce attack surface through reverse connect technology. Additional features include support for static or dynamic conditional access policies and the ability to mandate multi-factor authentication.

If you’re not sure whether Windows Virtual Desktop is the right approach for your business, we office a Proof of Concept service. With a small pilot group you can explore whether it’s a good fit for a team, department or the entire organisation, without the financial investment of a full deployment. Find out more here >

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