Interesting to read of Google’s launch of the ChromeBook.
As corporates migrate their applications to the Cloud can they move away from providing corporate desktops or laptops to the end user? Provision of these devices and their support is a major corporate expense. Could we move to a position whereby ‘the expectation is that if you want to work for us you need to manage your own connectivity to the Internet‘?
This position has to major attractions:
- end users can use whatever device they want to use
- corporates avoid the cost of supply and maintenance of a fleet of end user devices
- the end of the ens user support desk as we know it
Many end users are completely frustrated by corporate guidlenes restricting how they can use their device, which applications they can download and install, the fact that their work PC is way below the spec of their home PC fleet. In many cases we operate Lowest Common Denomionator type thinking – the advanced user is restricted to that the LCD can use.
Corporates struggle to manage end users and struggle to meet their expectations. And there is a vast range of devices: PCs, laptops, notebooks, phones.
Much of the technology is there to enable this move. Many of the corporate apps (or the apps required to do your job) can be provided via the cloud. There are many relevant and effective security solutions.
Who would support end users in this scenario? A combination of the end user, the cloud providers and, to some limited extent, the corporate. It requires a mind set change – it becomes the end user’s responsibility to be able to connect to various applications (whatever device she/he chooses to use). This drives a different experience for the end users, the corporate and the cloud provider. But in the long run it will result in corporates investing more time in delivering solutions and less time in providing ‘free’ support. If you require a car to do your job it is your responsibility to have a car, maintain the car and use it safely for work. Why not the same with end user computing? Fleets of company cars are the not the only model.