Microsoft Corporation has just announced Windows 365 – a cloud service which introduces new means of experiencing Windows 10 or Windows 11 (when they become widely available) for businesses of all sizes.
Windows 365 delivers the operating system to Microsoft Cloud, providing the full Windows experience – from apps, to data, to settings – to personal or corporate devices. Securely designed and purpose-built with Zero Trust principles, Windows 365 secures and stores information in the Cloud – not on the device: creating a safe and productive experience for workers, from interns and contractors to software developers and industrial designers.
Windows 365 has also introduced a new hybrid personal computing category called PC Cloud, which leverages the power of the Cloud and the capabilities of devices to deliver a full, more personalized Windows experience. This is an exciting development as worldwide organizations strive to figure out the best approach to facilitate hybrid working models.
“We are creating a new concept with Windows 365: PC Cloud,” said Satya Nadella, Chairman and CEO, Microsoft. “Much like applications are being brought to the Cloud with SaaS, we’re now bringing operating systems to the Cloud, providing organizations with greater flexibility and a secure way to enable their workforce to be more productive and better connected, regardless of their locations.”
New work practices transformed by virtual processes and remote collaboration have emerged in recent times. Along with these trends, employees also require access to company resources from any location and device – and with cybersecurity threats on the rise, securing those resources is paramount.
“Hybrid work has fundamentally changed the role of technology in organizations today,” explains Jared Spataro, Corporate Vice President, Microsoft 365. “With a more differentiated workforce than ever before, organizations require new approaches to deliver a great productivity experience with increased versatility, convenience, and security. PC Cloud is a new hybrid personal computing category which transforms any device into a personalized, productive, and secure digital workspace. Today’s announcement of Windows 365 is just the beginning of the possibilities as we blur the lines between devices and the Cloud.”
Windows 365 helps companies solve the challenges they have been facing since well before the pandemic. Employees expect greater flexibility and more options to work from different locations, while still ensuring the security of organizational data.
Seasonal workers are able to move in and out of teams without logistical challenges, such as owning brand new hardware or securing personal devices – allowing organizations to scale their work in busy periods more efficiently and securely.
In addition, companies can conveniently ensure that employees in creative, analytics, engineering, or scientific areas have greater computing power and secure access to the essential applications they demand.
By building on the strengths of the Windows Operating System and the Cloud, Windows 365 delivers convenience to any organization in three keyways :
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With instant boot to their personal Cloud PC, users can deploy all their apps, tools, data, and settings from the existing Cloud across any device. Windows 365 delivers the full PC experience in the Cloud. The Cloud also provides the versatility of processing power and storage, allowing IT to be scaled up or down as needed. With the option of Windows 10 or Windows 11 (once it becomes widely available in 2021), organizations can select the Cloud PC which suits them at a price per user per month.
With PC Cloud, users can log in and pick up where they left off across devices, providing a simple and familiar Windows experience through the Cloud. For IT, Windows 365 also simplifies deployment, updates, and management – and unlike other solutions, it doesn’t require any virtualization experience. By optimizing Windows 365 for endpoints, IT can easily procure, deploy, and manage their organization’s Cloud PCs the same way they manage physical PCs through Microsoft Endpoint Manager. Small and medium-sized businesses can purchase Windows 365 directly or through a Cloud service provider and set up Cloud PCs for their organization with just a few clicks. Microsoft is also continuing to innovate on Azure Virtual Desktop for organizations with deep virtualization experience that want more customization options and flexibility.
Windows 365 is designed to be secure, leveraging the power of the Cloud and Zero Trust principles. Information is secured and stored in the Cloud, not on the device. Staying up to date and building on the strength of Microsoft’s comprehensive security capabilities and foundation, Windows 365 simplifies security and recommends the best security settings for your existing environment.
For decades, Microsoft Partners have been at the center of how we deliver technology and business transformation to consumers around the world. The depth of Microsoft’s Cloud offering, and technology portfolio gives partners the power to build innovative, industry-specific solutions. Windows 365 enables our Partners to continue to achieve even more.
From system integrators, managed service providers, independent software vendors (ISVs), to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), the new PC Cloud category presents opportunities for our Partners to deliver new Windows experiences in the Cloud.
Organizations from all around the world will be seeking system integrators and managed service providers to assist them in getting the most out of their Windows.
ISVs continue to build Windows apps and can now deliver them in the Cloud so that businesses can work in new and improved approaches as they continue to transform digitally. At the same time, OEM manufacturers get the opportunity to integrate Windows 365 into their extensive portfolio of services, alongside powerful device features and secure hardware.
“To be at their best in the new workplace, employees need technology that is familiar, easy to use, secure, and readily available,” said Veit Siegenheim, Global Modern Workplace Lead, Avanade. “With Windows 365, Microsoft is harnessing the power of the Cloud to empower productivity anywhere, from any device, and enhance the workplace experience.”