One of these days after a discussion about how cheap hardware has become (and the power that is now available on your $400 desktop/laptop) I started to think, especially after winning that Wyse notebook/terminal at the BriForum GeekOut show, what is going on with Thin Client hardware.
No matter what the vendors may say these should be cheaper and have way more power that what we see on the market these days. To start, they are pretty much all x86 based. Ok, they may have a different, fanless power supply, and something else. But why these things have not dropped in price while increasing their power as PCs/Laptops did?
I do understand these devices do have flash memory and several other things your regular PC does not have. But in my opinion there is no reason why these are so underpowered and at the same time, overpriced when compared to regular PCs.
And that in a way kind of slows down the adoption of server centric solutions. Note I am not using the term ‘Server Based’. Server centric means any solution that runs off a centralized server model, whatever that is a TS/Citrix farm or a VDI hosted solution.
With overpriced and underpowered clients at the user end, the overall experience is reduced and more than that, IT starts to question what the benefit is on having on someone’s desk something that costs as much or more than a full blown PC. Ok I do understand things like power consumption and so on. But these are usually variables that most IT people are not even aware of. And regardless of all these arguments, even if it sucks 1/10 of the power a PC does, does it need to cost more and be that underpowered? I am sure there is room for improvements on thin clients. But as I see it, the manufacturers are kind of trying to maximize their gains by selling something that has indeed an outdated design that for sure has not changed for years! So why invest money to come up with the killer thin client that can provide PC like experience to SBC/VDI environments and still use way less power than a PC, having no moving parts if we can still sell that 10 year old design and make way more money?
Well what do you think? To me, if this industry wants to become mainstream in what they do they must change. The same way companies like Citrix and Microsoft are changing the way we access our applications today.
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