Tuesday, July 12, 2011

#ALGORITHMS: "Desktop Virtualization Growing to $5B by 2016"

Virtualization will seep into every aspect of business computing over the next five years, growing tenfold as recession cost-cutting fades and mobilization of the workforces increase. Virtualizationwas perceived as useful, but expensive during the cost-cutting era before the recessionbegan to fade circa 2009, when just $500 million was invested in it. During therecession, it was still cheaper to tether workers to their desks and force themto work with inexpensive generic PCs. Now, however, businesses are jumping onthe visualization bandwagon not only to unshackle workers from their desktopPCs, but also to sidestep the security risks of mobile devices overapplications customized by IT for thin clients, tablets and smartphones.

According to ABI Research, the worldwide market for hosted VDI (virtual desktop infrastructure) will grow tenfold from 2009 levels to top $5 billion by 2016, with North America and Europe accounting for the bulk of the new installations.

Virtualization enables business partners to provide more comprehensive solutions to new and existing customers, as well as allowing companies to optimize IT investments, infrastructure and resources.

ABI Research's study, entitled "Desktop Virtualization: The Global Market for Virtualized Business Desktop PCs," concentrates on virtualization of desktop PCs, where their operating system, applications and databases are relocated to cloud computers, which then remotely deliver the same desktop experience as before to a secure laptop, netbook or other thin client, tablet or smartphone. Leading the charge in this category, according to ABI Research is Norton Ghost, Citrix XenDesktop and VMware View. Each of these solutions meets the demands of today's mobile workforce while ensuring high security that would be difficult to match with applications custom-made by IT.

"The VDI market will exhibit impressive growth in the next five years," said Larry Fisher, director, automotive, energy and emerging technologies, at ABI Research. "Buyers will principally consist of large enterprises looking to reduce their desktop support and management costs, and companies and organizations that need to lock data in the data center, either for compliance or security reasons, [allowing] the IT department to integrate a wide range of devices into corporate networks with relative ease [and providing] full corporate desktops through iPads, smartphones and other popular devices."

Other benefits include enhanced business continuity, lower overall energy expenditures for the smaller clients over desktop PCs, and enhanced recovery capabilities after disasters. High-end virtualization and cloud-computing providers like IBM cite four main reasons to adopt virtualization now: consolidation of resources to improve efficiency and business agility; easier management of variable workloads; the ability to automate processes to reduce management costs and provide more consistency; plus the ability to optimize delivery of services for faster responses to changing circumstances.

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