Dell is looking to get a jumpstart on its VDI competitors for the upcoming release of Windows 10 on June 29, but both Gartner and IDC are pessimistic about the immediate prospects for Microsoft’s newest OS. The world’s third largest PC vendor (14% of Q2 shipments, behind Lenovo, 19.7% and HP, 17.4%) has announced:
-Wyse vWorkspace 8.6 software for enhanced usability and performance for Microsoft Azure; and,
-Dell Unified Communications Command Suite (UCCS) enhancements, including analytics reporting for Office 365 and Cisco Unified Communications Manager.
The two new enhancements are aimed at organizations looking to deploy Microsoft-based VDI, said Dan O’Farrell, Senior Director of Product Marketing, Dell Cloud Client-Computing.
To be released as a free upgrade, Windows 10 is ‘the best Windows ever’, according to a blog from Yusuf Mehdi, Corporate VP, Windows and Devices Group, Microsoft. ‘It has new innovations like Cortana, Microsoft Edge and the Xbox app. It’s fast, more secure and compatible. It’s familiar and easy to use. It’s automatically up to date.’
While Microsoft is saying all the right things, the rest of the year is expected to be rocky for the new OS. Gartner has predicted that Windows 10 will result in delayed replacement PC purchases as enterprises and other large organizations put plans on hold as they begin evaluating the OS. IDC agreed, blaming the current decline in PC sales on a strong dollar and lots of inventory, that is now being sold off cheaply, ahead of Windows 10’s arrival. Both however are optimistic for a rebound in 2016.
“Microsoft and PC vendors still need to convince users of the advantages of the new OS and new PCs, which will take some time,” said Loren Loverde, VP, Worldwide PC Trackers, IDC. “In addition to educating clients, they’ll face tough competition from other devices, and weak spending in many regions. As a result, we see PC shipments stabilizing in 2016, followed by limited growth for the next few years.”
What that means as far as thin clients remains to be seen, but Windows 10 is not the only challenge for Dell’s announcements: the oft-proclaimed ‘year of VDI’ never arrived, but slowly and surely virtual desktops are showing up in more places. Both Gartner and IDC agree that there is a solid market here, one that is expected to continue to grow in the 10-11% per year range.
Unlike its third-place finish in last quarter’s PC shipments, Dell is solidly in the lead in the thin and terminal client segment, with 29.7% share of shipments in Q1, followed by HP (25.3%) and NComputing (8.8%). IDC expects a stronger second half for 2015, but overall volume for 2015 has been lowered from 5.98 million units in the previous forecast to 5.71 million, with long term growth remaining modestly positive.
“VDI is not for everybody and for every use.” O’Farrell said the market research indicates a slow but steady increase in the VDI market. “It’s not a violent hockey stick… it’s at a steady increase, more like a 5% increase rather than doubling.”
He segments the VDI market into two groups: those that really need VDI, for security and management requirements, and “others that are happy to discover it”, including healthcare, retail, finance, government and education. “Those are our biggest verticals and those are the ones that are driving the increase.”
Looking ahead, O’Farrell said Dell will continue on its path of offering customers more choices and simplicity. One of the reasons the market hasn’t taken off as predicted has been the perception that VDI is complex, which is why the company’s recurring theme has been “more offerings from Dell that make VDI even easier, and simpler and easier to scale.”
Dell wants to make VDI more attractive to the masses, offering more flavors of thin and zero clients to satisfy a broader use case.
Dirty Details Done Dirt Cheap
The secure, highly scalable and boasting a ‘superb user experience’ Wyse 7490-Z90Q10 and 5490-D90Q10 thin clients will be available with Windows 10 IoT Enterprise starting July 29, starting at $659 for the 7000 series and $599 for the 5000 series. Benefits and features include: quad-core AMD G-Series processors for fast boot, smooth performance and full productivity across a broad range of use cases; security features such as Trusted Platform Module (TPM), BitLocker Drive Encryption, Secure Boot, and Windows Defender; and, right-sized management for different use cases, from on-premises with “hands off” file server, Wyse Device Manager software (WDM), or Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager (SCCM).
Wyse vWorkspace 8.6 desktop virtualization software, starting at $97.50 per named use and to be available July 31, supports Microsoft Hyper-V and Azure platforms, as well as Windows 10-based virtual machines (VMs). It lowers the cost of hosting Windows remote applications on Microsoft Azure by up to 67% a day, and it is also possible to run vWorkspace from the Azure Marketplace to get started quickly. Additional new benefits and features include: global localization; greater connectivity to Windows applications; ease of use; and, flexibility, i.e. application layering for VDI, which simplifies application deployment and management, and reduces the number of Windows images that need to be maintained.
UCCS 8.1, the new release of Unified Communications Command Suite, adds analytics reporting for Office 365 for Exchange Online and Cisco Unified Communications Manager. It is available today