Amazon Web Services Ventures into Virtual Desktops

Boldly entering the desktop virtualization fray, Amazon Web Services just announced WorkSpaces. As its name hints, it is a fully managed desktop computing service in the cloud.

According to Amazon, WorkSpaces allows customers to provision cloud-based desktops so end-users can access the documents, applications and resources they need with the device of their choice, including laptops and tablets. And the e-commerce giant promises customers can do this for less than half the cost of most traditional virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) solutions.

"Over the past couple years, the new service customers have requested most frequently is a virtual cloud desktop service," said Gene Farrell, general manager of Amazon WorkSpaces. "They've been frustrated by the available options -- traditional desktops that are hard to manage and keep secure, or virtual desktops that are expensive and deliver inconsistent performance. Amazon WorkSpaces aims to address these issues by offering secure, easy-to-manage, high-performance desktops in the cloud at a fraction of the price of traditional VDI."

Amazon Flexes Cloud Muscle

Amazon is positioning its cloud service as advantageous over on-premises VDI solutions, which offer the benefits of centralized desktop management and security at a high cost because they require companies to invest in network and storage infrastructure to support the delivery of a high-quality virtual desktop experience.

By migrating enterprise desktops to the cloud, Amazon said, WorkSpaces eliminates both the up-front investment and the ongoing management of infrastructure while still offering all the security and efficiency of a centralized model. WorkSpaces offers a complete cloud-based desktop computing service including compute, persistent storage, and software applications.

We asked Rob Enderle, principal analyst at the Enderle Group, for his thoughts on Amazon entering the VDI market. He told us there are a number of competitors in the space like Mainframe2 and OnLive -- but they lack the kind of market power...

Comments are closed.