A few days ago Microsoft made news by introducing the Microsoft WinTPC, or Thin PC. This promises a smaller footprint, a locked-down version of Windows 7 that – when combined with web connectivity and powerful online apps (such as Office 365) -can deliver the rich capabilities required in a low-maintenance, secure desktop solution. It’s a model that could work… just ask Apple about marrying hardware with great software!

Even Linux leader, Red Hat, is making news about the revival of the thin client these days. The “slimming down” of the hardware and software industries reflects the blurring of lines between our personal and business lives. The devices we use at home -  cellphones, tablets, TVs, laptops and all the personalized, instant gratification they provide has become an expectation when we get to the office.

We can access nearly anything using these devices, regardless of where we are. Email, Internet, applications are all instantly available – many requiring only an active web connection. Even our music is now part of an online repository; for example, both Amazon and (more recently) Google have both announced plans to deliver storage and streaming access to personal music libraries.

Thin is In

This ‘thin client’ approach to rich content and capabilities delivered from beyond is seeing a resurgence in the business world, too. Cloud computing comes immediately to mind – but this post is not about that (at least not directly). Companies are looking to use old hardware in new ways. Instead of buying new, beefed up PC hardware simply shift the processing burden to the back-office (or cloud). Microsoft is investing heavily in this strategy: Office 365 promises to provide online access to a version of MS Office without the hassle of installing an increasingly heavy footprint.

At Adlib we’re big believers in putting users desktops on a diet by moving processor intensive processes into the back office.  The results are measurable and significant:

  • Accelerated processes by moving CPU intensive processes off the desktop and exposing it to all lines of business
  • Improved control through a centrally managed and deployed platform
  • Reduced costs by eliminating license and maintenance costs on the desktop

Slimming down… just in time for summer!