What is Desktop as a Service (DaaS)?
Get a better understanding of Desktop as a Service (DaaS) and its many benefits for your business.
Understanding Desktop as a Service (DaaS)
Desktop as a Service (DaaS) is an IT solution offered by cloud service providers that allows users to access a Windows desktop over the Internet with any Windows, Apple, or Android device. This Windows “cloud” desktop is loaded with their business applications and files, and each desktop can be customized to meet the needs of an individual business and its users. There is a very little learning curve as, once logged in, staff will use the same desktop with the same OS, applications, files, file locations, and printers they use at the office except it’s hosted in the cloud. In this way, businesses can provide a secure and consistent workspace regardless of what device the employee or contractor uses or where they are located: in the office, at home, or on the road.
Significant confusion exists around Desktop as a Service because of the many names it is known as and marketed under. Typical synonyms for DaaS are any combination of the words Virtual, Cloud, or Hosted with the words Desktop or Workspace. For example, Cloud Desktop, Virtual Desktop, Hosted Desktop, and Cloud Workspace are common terms used to market DaaS services.
To deliver Desktop as a Service, cloud service providers also use different technologies and architectures which also creates confusion. The most common technology used to deliver DaaS is RDP: Microsoft’s baseline remote desktop access technology. Other cloud service providers offer more advanced remote desktop technology, such as Citrix, to deliver DaaS with improved security, performance, and functionality many organizations value. When comparing DaaS providers it is worthwhile to understand more about the benefits of the different technologies used as well as the security, performance, and availability features built into the underlying cloud hosting architecture.
How does DaaS differ from Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI)?
Another complicating factor is the difference between VDI and DaaS. Although sometimes incorrectly used synonymously VDI (Virtual Desktop Infrastructure) and DaaS differ in a couple of ways. First, VDI generally implies a system architecture where each user has a dedicated instance of a Windows operating system, typically Windows 10. Where DaaS generally implies a system architecture where users share one instance of the same OS, typically Windows Server 2016 or 2019. To the end user, the difference is usually meaningless. But, from the cloud service provider’s point of view, DaaS architectures are far more efficient to license, resource, and manage. Second, DaaS implies a utility type service delivered by cloud service provider. VDI solutions do not.
What are the benefits of Desktop as a Service?:
Desktop as a Service Increases Access and Mobility
- Anywhere, anytime, any device access
- Enables bring your own device (BYOD) policy
- Remote and mobile workers can access the company applications
- Once click access to Cloud Desktop
Desktop as a Service Improves Security
- Applications and data are safe in the cloud behind layers of network security
- Protected from corrupted, lost, or stolen devices as data is in the cloud
- Daily cloud backups reduce the risk of data loss
- Enhanced protection due to data centre security measures and regulations
Desktop as a Service is cost effective
- End-to-end service management
- Reduce or eliminate traditional desktop IT support and device costs
- Predictable and economic price point – pay-per-user model
- Can scale cost effectively without IT investment
- Cost of infrastructure and capital expenditures eliminated
Desktop as a Service (DaaS) is an efficient business model that is cost-effective compared to conventional IT solutions. DaaS delivers high levels security and flexibility out-of-the-box for small and medium sized businesses of all kinds.