With mobile devices adding to desktops in companies, users will have a growing appetite for a single, seamless experience across all these hardware--one that can be enabled by the technology of virtualized desktop infrastructure (VDI).
When it comes to enabling the use of tablets and smartphones at work, what matters is not the underlying technical aspects of the technology deployed, but whether users are given the best seamless experience possible across devices, David Dzienciol, regional vice president and general manager of sales for Asia-Pacific at Parallels.
Security and accessibility are important to users, but so is look and feel, he said in an interview Tuesday.
Deskbound computers won't be totally replaced by smaller, handheld devices because certain tasks and functions are simply more feasible on certain devices, he argued. What, when and how users use their desktops and mobile gadgets will depend on their discretion and external circumstances, but the common thread joining these physically independent devices together is the experience across all of them.
For example, from leaving a laptop at the office to using a tablet while commuting, users don't want to feel like it is a different work e-mail system they're accessing, even though technically it is, said Dzienciol. "If the e-mail looks and feels different across devices, it's hard to feel like you're using the same app equally across."
Tablets are "one piece of the puzzle" in enterprise computing, and it remains to be seen if eventually it will be solely tablets in the future. Instead, he predicted "be it tablet or any other device, there will be devices accessing virtual machines".
Making VDI reality
As a technology, VDI drives efficiency and accessibility, but the key question is how to "make that a reality" as experienced by end-users themselves, said the Parallels executive, who added it is an area the IT company will focus on with a two-fold value proposition.
The first is tapping the fact that users want the same experience when accessing apps and information on different devices. The second is leveraging users' familiarity with the brand as enabling that experience, he said, referring to Parallels Desktop for Mac as an example.
Dzienciol also pointed out there continues to be growing adoption of Apple computers and its Macintosh desktop platform in Asia-Pacific and globally. "It is a great opportunity to attach to that growth as our brand becomes synonymous [with providing the Windows experience on the Mac], and mobile becomes an extension of that target."
Currently, Parallels offers paid mobile app that enables users to control a Windows virtual machine remotely from an iOS device.