With more organizations starting to rely on cloud-based applications such as Google Apps instead of traditional productivity applications such as Microsoft Office running on local Windows PC, an opportunity to rethink how PCs are deployed is starting to emerge.
At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) today, Hewlett-Packard unveiled the HP Slate Pro AiO, an all-in-one touchscreen PC that runs Google Android. Based on an NVIDIA Tegra 4 quad-core processor and sporting a 21.5-in screen, the HP Slate Pro AiO doesn’t directly run Windows. But it does feature an HDMI port through which a mobile computing device running Windows can be plugged in. Then, the HP Slate Pro AiO can invoke Citrix Receiver desktop virtualization software to display Windows applications on its screen.
According to Pavana Polineni-Gadde, a global marketing product manager for the HP Commercial PC Systems Division, the HP Slate Pro AiO is designed to more cost-effectively support the new cloud application realities of the modern enterprise. Instead of having to pay for Windows licenses for every desktop system, Polineni-Gadde says the HP Slate Pro AiO allows organizations to run Google Android on a traditional desktop, while giving users the ability to use a mobile device to access Windows applications running either locally on a mobile computing device offline or via a central server.
Priced under $400, Polineni-Gadde says that as the ecosystem of Android applications continues to expand, many IT organizations are going to rethink how they access and deploy productivity applications. In support of the effort, HP is also providing access to 50GB of free storage on Box.com for the life of each device.
HP will continue to offer a wide range of desktop systems based on Intel processors that run Windows. But as the cloud continues to evolve, it’s clear that other ways of accessing applications are starting to emerge that will have a profound impact on which classes of processors and operating systems are actually used, both inside and out of the enterprise.