Managed IT firm Colt has announced the launch of its new Workspace as a Service offering, as its customers begin to react to the changing landscape of end-user IT.
The new service will be based on VMware's Horizon Suite virtual desktop software and will be available for business users on tablets and smartphones as well as on traditional laptop and desktop systems.
Steve Hughes, Colt's principal cloud specialist, explained that many businesses are now considering whether they can truly afford new device rollouts every few years, and are now looking to "as a service" tools to save on these costs. He added that businesses facing expansion would also benefit from the tool.
"Some companies are looking to be a bit more agile in terms of developing regional offices or setting up offices in new territories," he told V3.
He added that firms need to carefully consider the business case for such a move, saying that moving towards virtual workspaces was a cultural transformation that needs to be grounded by operational needs. The end users of the service also need to be taken into account, he said.
Colt has been operating internally with virtual workspaces for several years, and decided to launch its Workspace as a Service as a standalone product when the company decided it had the infrastructure in place to do so.
"We're launching it now because we feel the service element and the technology element and are all coming together," Hughes explained.
Colt operates an extensive network of data centres and long-distance fibre networks, which the firm believes will set its Workspace as a Service offering apart.
As workers become more demanding of the types of devices they use for work, the challenge for the IT manager has grown.
Enabling users to work how they want while retaining a secure environment is a difficult target to achieve, so more businesses are beginning to consider cloud-based products to ensure data is stored away from workers' devices, safely in the cloud.
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