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When COVID-19 hit the US earlier this year, organizations of all types and sizes had to metaphorically “flip the switch” to remote work at a moment’s notice. IT departments had to provision devices and customize remote environments that empowered users to essentially do business from their homes. The COVID-19 era obviously has introduced many new challenges for IT teams, from productivity to resiliency to security. But there is a marked difference in the way businesses responded, based on their virtual readiness.

For businesses who were already on track for a digital transformation, “flipping the switch to remote work” meant an acceleration of their existing strategy with some incremental tweaks.

But for other businesses, starting remote work was infinitely more challenging and frustrating. With no prior focus on digital transformation, these businesses had to quickly spin up infrastructure, access, applications, and security in order to make their users as productive as possible in the “new normal.” Windows Virtual Desktop on Surface has been able to help with that.

Finding the (virtual) way forward

No matter which of the above scenarios your company falls into, you’ve now begun to clear the way forward. You’ve set hybrid work in motion, but it may still be a long time before your team is fully back in the office. On an ongoing basis, how can you meet employee-specific technology needs across a variety of job functions; stay compliant with industry regulations; support specialized, processor-intensive workloads; and create resilience for business continuity? Now, as you’re evaluating next steps, it’s a great time to take a look at Windows Virtual Desktop on Surface, which helps you do all the above and flex with an increasingly elastic workforce.

Windows Virtual Desktop on Surface allows you to extend the power of Surface devices even further by joining them to Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI). VDI is a key piece of the puzzle to help you easily and quickly spin up a fully productive, customized, and secure cloud experience on demand for your end users. With the innovative engineering of Surface, interacting with these devices is easy and natural for users at any level of readiness, whether it’s by touch, voice, ink, or Surface Dial.

So what does virtualization on Surface mean for the end user? Let’s take a common remote work example: a Teams meeting. Moving a Teams meeting into virtualized cloud infrastructure means needing to support video, live audio calls, web sharing, and app sharing—and all at a high quality. With Surface, you have the ability to move some of those workloads onto the device for localized experiences that are even better quality.

With Surface and Windows Virtual Desktop, hardware and software work together to create a great user experience that blurs the lines between on-device and VDI. Because of device redirection support, using Surface, you get pass-through capabilities that contribute to a seamless user experience, including:

  • Biometric authentication using the Windows Hello camera, standard on every Surface device.
  • Surface Pen and Whiteboard operate in a fluid and natural way, with no lag.
  • Immersive Teams experiences with support for multi-point touch, inking, far-field mics, and speakers directed and tuned to immerse.

Enabling chip-to-cloud security without compromise

The old idea of virtualization has had to evolve to meet the demands of the moment, but security carries the same weight whether your user is on-device or virtualized. Because of how dynamic work environments are today and how often they change—imagine users working from home, moving around throughout the house to find a quiet enough space with strong enough Wi-Fi, kids running in the background, even heading out to their car to take an important call in a more private environment—multilayered security is paramount importance to protecting data and organizational resources.

With the chip-to-cloud integration of Microsoft 365 and the security and manageability of Windows 10 Pro, Surface delivers connected hardware, software, apps, and services the way they were intended. From the hardware to the cloud, it’s a powerful story about securing your Surface endpoint while maintaining a secure environment when connected to Windows Virtual Desktop.

Putting modern management on autopilot

Modern management gives end users the ability to deploy Surface out of the box without any intervention. When you bring that autodeployment scenario to Windows Virtual Desktop on Surface, it fits like a hand in a glove. You can ship devices directly to your users’ homes, where they autoprovision and are ready to go, automatically connected to the Virtual Desktop environment. This represents a huge benefit to organizations from a time-savings, cost-savings, and value standpoint.

As an example, read how the Georgia Office of the State Treasury used Windows Virtual Desktop on Surface to keep critical state services operating for citizens during COVID-19. It’s clear that this state department looked at their investment as part of a long term strategy for digital transformation.

Additionally, Windows Virtual Desktop on Surface can even help your organization reduce its Carbon Footprint. For example, Surface Pro has a Product Carbon Footprint (PCF) of 93.8. Surface Pro X has a PCF of 127. These numbers are roughly one-third of the PCF of comparative competitor devices.

Transforming with resiliency

As your company settles into “remote work as the norm,” or transforms toward a permanent hybrid model, Windows Virtual Desktop on Surface can support your employees’ persistent, on-demand, or just-in-time work scenarios.

Ready to get more granular with the power of this VDI on Surface?