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Windows 365 Announced

by James Clease

Wednesday was an exciting day for all M365 and Azure users with Microsoft dropping news about their latest service, Windows 365, which is due to be released to businesses on 2nd of August 2021.

This is probably the biggest change to M365 and Azure this year, offering Windows as a SaaS (Software as a Service) solution. This provides the ability to access a Windows virtual desktop and its applications from any device at any time, enabling you to pick up your session where you left off. 

So, what does this mean for your business and your employees?  

Security and flexibility: these concepts have become more important than ever since the pandemic changed the way we work. Companies now need to secure their data, whilst still being able to offer their team the flexibility to work from any device at any given time. This is where Azure virtual desktop stepped up to the plate near the end of 2019 and gave businesses a quick solution to enable users to access both cloud and on-premises data.

Now Microsoft has upped the game again, by offering an even simpler solution, that will fit not just a hybrid environment but also offers an alternative for the need to purchase expensive hardware. Many businesses were suddenly faced with the expensive task of replacing desktops with laptops to enable home working, and with laptops starting upwards of £350, this was no small cost to cover. A further downside of this is that you often find the hardware is rarely used to its full potential and requires constant maintenance. 

Enter Windows 365. 

Now, users can access Windows features seamlessly from any compatible device without compromising on the security of corporate data. This also opens up the option for companies to purchase cheaper hardware, such as ChromeBooks or lower spec laptops, whilst still offering scalability of performance to its employees. This will be a game changer for not just businesses, but schools and colleges as well.

Many will describe this service as VDI (Virtual desktop Infrastructure), but really this should be described as DaaS (Desktop as a Service), as the infrastructure and complexity of a normal VDI environment is no longer the customer’s issue to deal with. Microsoft has put a huge amount of thought and effort into makinge this solution flexible and easy to manage.  

And the news just keeps getting better! 

Microsoft will also be offering a monthly per-user subscription to enable easy cost management. Each virtual machine will be dedicated to the individual and will offer the ability to implement security by leveraging Microsoft endpoint manager and enabling modern authentication using Microsoft MFA (multi-factor authentication). 

With such a simple solution, this service will offer businesses flexibility, scalability and security for their data and most importantly their employees.

With features embedded for IT admins to help ease of monitoring and management of the individual virtual desktops, this will be a great solution for many businesses going forward. 

Contact us to discuss how Windows 365 could fit with your work environment.