What is the Microsoft Windows 365 Cloud Service?
Windows 365 Cloud – Microsoft announced Windows 365, a service that allows businesses to easily give their employees cloud access to a Windows 10 desktop (with Windows 11 to follow once it becomes generally available). Consider game streaming on your computer. On August 2, 2021, it will be available to business customers (and only business users).
Windows 365 was long-anticipated and is essentially an extension of existing remote desktop services, as announced in a somewhat cryptic press statement.
But, you could argue, doesn’t Microsoft already provide Azure Virtual Desktop, which allows organizations to provide their employee’s remote access to a Windows PC in the cloud? Yes, however, it appears that Windows 365 is significantly more user-friendly and does not require the complexity of setting up a full Azure Virtual Desktop environment in the cloud.
This also provides Microsoft the opportunity to talk about “a new hybrid personal computing category” company CEO Satya Nadella calls a “Cloud PC.” It’s a bit unclear what precisely that’s supposed to be, but it’s a new category.
“Just as SaaS took applications to the cloud, we’re now bringing the operating system to the cloud, giving businesses more flexibility and a safe means to enable their employees to be more productive and connected, regardless of location,” says the company.
Windows 365 will be available in two editions: Business and Enterprise. Individual Cloud PCs utilizing Azure Virtual Desktop can be set with a single CPU, 2GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage on the low end, all the way up to eight CPUs, 32GB of RAM, and 512GB of storage on the high end. For both Windows 365 Business and Enterprise, Microsoft is offering 12 distinct configurations, and organizations will be able to expand computing capacity, so there will be plenty of possibilities.
Businesses will be able to create Cloud PCs and allocate them to employees in minutes, eliminating the need for specialized physical hardware. Many firms that hire remote workers or even temporary contract workers who need secure access to a corporate network may find this appealing. Employees don’t have to manage VPNs or worry about security on personal devices because their complete Windows PC is in the cloud.
Microsoft has been working on Windows 365 for years, and it appears to be arriving at the perfect time for enterprises trying to address remote work issues. Microsoft’s operating systems group had been working on a cloud-based video game streaming service codenamed “Arcadia.”
While Windows 365 is currently only available to businesses, it’s easy to picture a future where Microsoft could provide people with more capable PC computing via a browser.
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