Desktop-as-a-Service (DaaS) is a model for delivering virtual desktops, including the requisite network, storage, compute, virtualization and tools, directly to business users from the cloud. DaaS providers charge an ongoing, per-user subscription fee to manage this environment, optimize the experience and ensure uninterrupted access to a complete Windows operating system and set of business applications for those users on nearly any device from any location.
Continued Growth Projected
Although DaaS has been primed for growth since its inception around a decade ago, that growth is expected to accelerate.
During the global pandemic in 2020 and 2021, many businesses were forced to begin operating remotely. Initially, employees simply switched from using company-based systems to their home computers. This posed a challenge for IT professionals, who had to juggle hundreds of unfamiliar PCs on countless home networks. This meant little visibility, no management tools, and increased security risk. The Pandemic became the event that spurred DaaS into hypergrowth as it proved an excellent solution for IT departments to maintain governance, control, and security in a remote environment.
According to Gartner’s Market Guide for DaaS, “The rapid increase in remote and hybrid work, as well as the need for business continuity, has made desktop-as-a-service a major priority for organizations.” While DaaS market revenue grew by 98 percent in 2020, Gartner forecasts that the number of users for DaaS will grow by more than 150 percent between 2020 and 2023.
Advantages Over VDI
The terms DaaS and virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) are sometimes used interchangeably. Although both use similar technologies, the main difference is that VDI is a single-tenant solution while DaaS is a multi-tenant solution.
While a VDI system is designed to accommodate hundreds of virtual desktops for a single organization, it is typically based in an on-site data center. VDI may be a good option for organizations that want full control over the network, hardware infrastructure, and server resources. DaaS, on the other hand, is based in the cloud, which is shared by multiple organizations that have little or no individual control over the hardware and systems.
However, DaaS offerings usually have fairly advanced security systems and can often meet customer compliance standards. Since this is a core business, DaaS vendors tend to update often and quickly, passing along those benefits to all their subscribing customers. Companies
opting for VDI may need to perform their own upgrades and enhancements, which can be risky, expensive, and complicated.
Although the end-user experience may be similar whether a company opts for a VDI or DaaS system, the delivery of this experience may vary. DaaS cloud providers work with regional data centers and hyperscale cloud providers like Microsoft Azure, which provides easier access to distant users and can more easily accommodate different types of operating systems. VDI, on the other hand, requires close proximity to end-users for a high-quality experience. If companies operate in multiple locations, this may require regional infrastructure or interacting with inconvenient operating systems.
VDI systems tend to require large capital investments in equipment, ongoing expenses for data center power and bandwidth, and continuing investment in specialized labor to maintain. After implementation, updating and scaling the infrastructure becomes a consistent duty as the business grows or changes, as a result even large businesses who have attempted to run VDI themselves and have the skillset to do so, are now opting for DaaS solutions.
A DaaS model offers more flexibility since it resides in the service provider’s cloud. This enables limitless and immediate scaling and performance and include the specialized skillset to maintain the solution. Costs are generally predictable monthly costs per user. However, keep an eye out for hidden costs—such as usage charges—that may ratchet up total expenses.
DaaS systems can work well for growing businesses or those employing temporary or seasonal workers as applications and desktops can be added only when you need them. Employees will be able to securely access the network regardless of where they are and what device they’re using.
Benefits of DaaS
Organizations that choose DaaS will reap many benefits on a day-to-day basis from accessibility to lower operating costs. Here are some of the top advantages that can be expected:
● Employees can work from anywhere. Whether a company has multiple locations, employs home-based professionals, or wants to retain executives fond of traveling, DaaS allows secure, governed access to a company’s systems from any location that has internet connectivity. Freedom and flexibility are the hallmarks of today’s happy employee, and DaaS helps deliver those benefits.
● No capital investment is required. Since DaaS is a subscription-based model, organizations can get up and running quickly and efficiently with no major capital expenditures in servers, hardware, or software licenses.
● IT department is freed from maintenance tasks. One of the biggest advantages of DaaS is allowing a company’s IT department to focus on higher-level, value-added initiatives instead of maintenance and upgrades required for an inhouse VDI solution –
and the constant lifecycle management of PCs. Some analysts report that migrating to DaaS can save between 30 percent and 50 percent over four years.
● Companies can take advantage of new business opportunities faster. Businesses that have the opportunity to grow, scale, or meet a sudden increase in demand will be much better positioned to do so with DaaS. Adding desktops or new applications for any number of users or new hires can be done quickly, efficiently, and securely.
● Organizations can rest assured that security is a top priority. In these days of increased cybercrime, businesses are understandably concerned about the security of their systems. A reputable DaaS partner can take over that responsibility more reliably because it moves the burden from the single desktop to the cloud environment. DaaS systems are regularly backed up, built in a securely hosted environment, and require multi-factor authentication protocols to access.
● With less equipment, businesses can further their sustainability image. The public is becoming more concerned with how companies interact with the world at large. By relying on DaaS, businesses can reduce their carbon footprint through less energy usage and equipment as well as reducing or eliminating employee commuting activities.
● Budget expectations are easier to predict. As most DaaS providers will offer a package of services for a set subscription fee, companies will be able to budget expenses more predictably. Sudden IT investments in expansions, unexpected maintenance, or security breach remediation are unlikely when engaged with a DaaS partner.
The way that a DaaS model works is quite simple, yet the demand, growth, and benefits are far-reaching and potentially explosive over the next several years. Businesses that take advantage of this technology will be well-positioned to grow and succeed in an increasingly competitive market.
To learn more about how Evolve IP’s tailored DaaS solution delivers the technology, support, management and expertise needed to fully embrace hybrid work, contact us today.