Amazon offers up a VDI-like client "desktop" complete with business applications, available via the cloud, of course.
Apparently, Amazon isn't content with taking on the enterprise server market and the likes of HP, Dell and IBM in the data center. Now, with WorkSpaces -- introduced at Amazon's re:Invent conference last week -- the cloud computing giant is going after what's left of the PC business with a new VDI-like alternative.
On reflection, WorkSpaces is a natural fit for a company that's been serving up millions of virtual server instances for years. Why not tweak the hardware, add a little software with a focus on mobile devices, stir in a new pricing model and unleash a service that undermines the need for an actual PC?
Technically, WorkSpaces is nothing new. Amazon's service is just pushing pixels over the wire using a cloud-optimized network protocol. This approach makes sense when your endpoint is often a smartphone or tablet while the system actually crunching application code is a virtual Xeon core with almost 4 GB memory and 50 GB of storage.
Server Market SplitsvilleJust because the server market's in the doldrums doesn't mean innovation has ceased. Far from it -- server technology is enjoying the biggest renaissance since the dawn of x86 systems. But the primary driver is now service providers, not enterprises.