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Versatile, cloud-based virtual desktop service enhances performance and security

Cloud Collaboration Reaches New Heights for Fujitsu and Citrix

Long-term partners Fujitsu Limited and Citrix Systems Japan have announced a new virtual desktop service based in the cloud. Designed to take some of the pain out of digital transformation, the new offering makes it easier to create digital workspaces in a secure manner that's scalable.

The Fujitsu Managed Infrastructure Service Virtual Desktop Service VCC (Virtual Client on Cloud) employs the Citrix suite of virtual desktop infrastructure products, including Citrix XenApp, Citrix XenDesktop, and Citrix ShareFile. The two companies have been working together in the VDI space for decades, but this new agreement enables Fujitsu to sell the new service.

"Fujitsu has always provided cutting-edge and highly reliable technology that supports society and our customers," explained Matsuhiro Kishimoto, Senior Fellow, SVP, Deputy Head of Service Platform Business, Fujitsu Limited. "I am certain that by offering a cloud-based service in combination with Citrix's VDI products, we will be able to meet the diverse needs of customers who are transforming the way they work."

Virtualization Is in demand
Globally, the virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) market is taking off as companies are finding it easier and cheaper to scale up through virtual desktops. Flexibility and mobility are key drivers of the trend. As many as 87% of companies are dependent to some extent on their employee's ability to access mobile business apps from their personal smartphones, according to Syntonic research. With VDI, users can access the same applications and store data remotely from any device without the data having to reside on that device. It can be a good way to secure shadow IT and cope with the demands of mobility.

Costs for virtual desktops are also dipping below comparable hardware costs, and with a single, fixed subscription price, ongoing variable running expenses can be eliminated. Compared to adopting your own solution, an outsourced VDI allows for rapid scalability at a fixed, known price. VDI is also capable of handling data-rich, graphics-heavy applications, so there's no need to compromise on performance.

There's also something to be said for a cloud-based service that allows for greater convergence and reduces the operations management burden on system administrators. No surprise then, that the market is set to reach $14 billion by 2020, according to Technavio. It puts the overall VDI penetration rate against commercial PCs at around 9% in 2015 and suggests it's likely to hit 40% by 2020.

Main Features of the Virtual Client on Cloud
Fujitsu is talking up a few key elements of the new service centered around some of the most popular and widely used business applications. There's support for Windows 10 version updates, so the VCC platform automatically updates to offer new functionality without any disruption to existing business systems. Data transmission is efficient enough for video or audio conversations via Skype, something VDI environments have struggled with in the past.

There's also support for Linux-based applications to be used in the VDI environment, which could prove particularly handy for market analysis, or scientific research. The Citrix ShareFile component delivers robust cloud storage that can be securely linked to internal company storage for seamless and secure access from anywhere and on any device.

The VCC uses NVIDIA's GPU virtualization technology to cater for functions that require a high-performance GPU. This could prove crucial for things like CAD and CAE software that demand high computational processing speeds.

The Future of Desktop Virtualization
Building your own on-premise VDI is fast becoming an unrealistic prospect. It's time-consuming, it's expensive, and it's complex. With a big partner you get security built-in, timely updates, and all sorts of integration with other software you probably already use. Most organizations accept this wisdom, so the next step is to choose the right provider. With this new VCC platform, Fujitsu and Citrix are making a strong play for your business.

If you're interested, Fujitsu Managed Infrastructure Service Virtual Desktop Service VCC is available starting on December 1, and will cost JPY 3,500 per month per user for a 100-user contract. That works to around $31 plus tax right now. There are already plans to expand the collaboration by folding Fujitsu's K5 public cloud service into the mix, so we can expect the VCC to grow over time.

About Simon Hill
Simon Hill is a freelance technology journalist and editor with a background in game development. You can find his work at Digital Trends, Tech Radar, Android Authority, USA Today, VentureBeat, Deal News, and many other places, both online and in print. He completed a Master’s Degree in Scottish History at Edinburgh University.

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